Daily News Digest September 5, 2019

Daily News Digest September 5, 2019

Daily News Digest Achives

Since World War I, ‘the war to end all wars’, there have been perpetual wars for perpetual peace, this Laura Gray’s cartoon from the front page of The Militant August 18, 1945, under banner headline: “There Is No Peace” Could Still Be Published Today!

During This Economic Crisis, Capitalism’s Three Point Political Program: Austerity, Scapegoat Blacks, Minorities, and ‘Illegal’ Immigrants for Unemployment, and  The Iron Heel.

Democracy?:  As the Capitalist Robber Barons Steal from the 99%: Only the 1% Voted For Austerity — The 99% Should Decide On Austerity — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From Austerity!  Under Austerity, All of the World Will Eventually Be Pauperized, Humbled, and Desecrated Like Greece and Puerto Rico.    Socialism Means True Democracy — The 99% Will Rule! — Not the Few!

Images of the Day:

One Nation Under SurveillanceQuotes of the Day: 

An important biological species is in danger of disappearing due to the fast and progressive destruction of its natural living conditions: mankind. We have now become aware of this problem when it is almost too late to stop it.   It is necessary to point out that consumer societies are fundamentally responsible for the brutal destruction of the environment. They arose from the old colonial powers and from imperialist policies which in turn engendered the backwardness and poverty, which today afflicts the vast majority of mankind.   With only 20 percent of the world’s population, these societies consume two-thirds of the metals and three-fourths of the energy produced in the world. They have poisoned the seas and rivers, polluted the air, weakened and punctured the ozone layer, saturated the atmosphere with gases which are changing weather conditions with a catastrophic effect we are already beginning to experience.   The forests are disappearing. The deserts are expanding.  Every year thousands of millions of tons of fertile soil end up in the sea. Numerous species are becoming extinct. Population pressures and poverty trigger frenzied efforts to survive even when it is at the expense of the environment. It is not possible to blame the Third World countries for this. Yesterday, they were colonies; today, they are nations exploited and pillaged by an unjust international economic order. The solution cannot be to prevent the development of those who need it most. The reality is that anything that nowadays contributes to underdevelopment and poverty constitutes a flagrant violation of ecology. Tens of millions of men, women, and children die every year in the Third World as a result of this, more than in each of the two world wars.   Unequal terms of trade, protectionism, and the foreign debt assault the ecology and promote the destruction of the environment. If we want to save mankind from this self-destruction, we have to better distribute the wealth and technologies available in the world. Less luxury and less waste by a few countries is needed so there is less poverty and less hunger on a large part of the Earth. We do not need any more transferring to the Third World of lifestyles and consumption habits that ruin the environment. Let human life become more rational. Let us implement a just international economic order. Let us use all the science necessary for pollution-free, sustained development. Let us pay the ecological debt, and not the foreign debt. Let hunger disappear, and not mankind.   Now that the alleged threat of communism has disappeared and there are no longer any more excuses for cold wars, arms races, and military spending, what is blocking the immediate use of these resources to promote the development of the Third World and fight the threat of the ecological destruction of the planet? Let selfishness end. Let hegemonies end. Let insensitivity, irresponsibility, and deceit end. Tomorrow it will be too late to do what we should have done a long time ago. — Fidel Castro, Earth Summit in Rio De Janeiro in 1992.

Videos of the Day:

Abby Martin & Richard Wolff Discuss Socialism in 2019

Extinction Rebellion Stages Liverpool Protest for Climate Action

Leading Israeli Journalists Launch Racist Rants about Palestinians

Aging Isn’t a Problem Ageism Is

Chomsky Says US is World’s Biggest Terrorist In the global scene we are racing towards a precipice which we are determined to fall over which will sharply reduce the prospects for decent survival. …There are actually two, one is environmental catastrophe which is imminent and we don’t have a lot of time to deal with it and we are going the wrong way, and the other has been around for 70 years, the threat of nuclear war, which is in fact increasing. If you look at the record it is a miracle we have survived.

U.S.:

The United States is not a Democracy (A government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly)! Only the 1%, through their ownership of the Republicrats and who profit from war and the war budget, vote for War and the war budget — A policy, which Gore Vidal called a  Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace. — The 99% Should Decide On War — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From War!  Under a Democracy, The 99% would have the right to vote on the policy of Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace! The United States takes from the poor and gives to the Rich

‘Always About the Con’: Ocasio-Cortez Says ‘Virtually Every’ Trump Policy Designed to Loot Public Coffers and Enrich His Cronies “Since corruption isn’t popular policy, racism works as the cover for the con. That’s why addressing racism isn’t a ‘distraction’—it’s key to understanding the hustle against working people.” By Jake JohnsonEnvironment:

Leaked IPCC Report Warns of the Future Of Oceans in Climate Change Devastating Storms, Loss of Freshwater And Fish Stocks Threatened                  The world’s vast oceans, glacial ice sheets and northern permafrost are poised to unleash disaster, including drought, floods, hunger and destruction, unless dramatic action is taken against human-caused carbon pollution and climate change, warns a leaked draft of a major U.N. report.                                                                              The Special Report on the Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate (SROCC) sounds alarm bells over declines in fish stocks, plus “a hundred-fold or more increase in the damages caused by superstorms, and hundreds of millions of people displaced by rising seas,” according to news agency Agence France-Presse (AFP), which obtained a copy of the 900-page draft report. Freshwater supplies for billions of people, including the world’s mountain dwellers, will be hit by melting glaciers that will first release far too much water, and then not enough, according to the report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a scientific body of the U.N. mandated to report the state of climate change. Melting permafrost in northern regions will also release billions of tons of carbon, adding to global warming, reports AFP, citing the IPCC report. By Sandra Cordon

Alaska’s Sea Ice Completely Melted for First Time in Recorded History“Even if we can’t escape its consequences, it is not too late to escape the mindset that brought us here.” —Alice O’Keeffe, reviewing This Is Not a DrillThe country of Iceland has held a funeral for its first glacier lost to the climate crisis. The once massive Okjökull glacier, now completely gone, has been commemorated with a plaque that reads: “A letter to the future. Ok is the first Icelandic glacier to lose its status as a glacier. In the next 200 years all our glaciers are expected to follow the same path. This monument is to acknowledge that we know what is happening and what needs to be done. Only you know if we did it.” By  Dahr JamailCivil Rights/Black Liberation:Bernie Wants to Seize the Means of Electricity Production Bernie Sanders wants to take private profit out of the energy grid as part of his comprehensive Green New Deal plan. “’We will end greed in our energy system,’ says Sanders.” A year after a neglected Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) power line sparked a wildfire that tore through northern California, presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders on Thursday visited Chico, Calif., where many who fled the fire made a new home. He held a town hall the same day he released a new climate plan, in which he declared that the days of investor-owned utilities—with their profit incentives to underinvest in the electric grid and double down on fossil fuels—have to end. He’s right: It is time for a massive public takeover of the nation’s electric grid. By Johanna BozuwaForeign Aid for Rwanda, Suffering for Rwandans and Congolese Rwanda is treated as a showcase of US-allied Africa, but even western capitalists don’t believe dictator Paul Kagame’s economic numbers, and the real money comes from looting the Congo. “Kagame is the Clintons’ darling — which is a no-no with Trump.” Rwanda received roughly “$1.22 billion” in development aid in 2016-2017 , the most recent year for which Official Development Aid (ODA) numbers are available on the website of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). The US was Rwanda’s top bilateral donor that year, giving $177.6 million, but Trump drastically reduced aid to the tiny East African nation. By Ann Garrison , BAR contributor How Race Made the Opioid Crisis The fundamental division between “dope” and medicine has always been the race and class of users. “The success of OxyContin hinged on racially bifurcated understandings of addiction.” In March 2018, President Donald Trump delivered a forty-minute speech about the crisis of addiction and overdose in New Hampshire. Standing before a wall tiled with the words “Opioids: The Crisis Next Door,” Trump blankly recited the many contributors to the current drug epidemic, including doctors, dealers, and manufacturers. Trump droned on mechanically until he reached a venomous crescendo about Customs and Border Protection’s seizure of 1,500 pounds of fentanyl. He brightened as he shifted focus to three of his most hated enemies, first blaming China and Mexico for saturating the United States with deadly synthetic opioids, then moving seamlessly to what he considered one of the great internal threats: “My administration is also confronting things called ‘sanctuary cities,’” Trump declared. “Ending sanctuary cities is crucial to stopping the drug addiction crisis.” By Donna MurchDissent Is Being Criminalized Right Under Our Noses If you painted “Black Lives Matter” on a wall to advocate against police violence, that could be prosecuted as terrorism. “Federal prosecutors could charge terrorism if actions might ‘affect’ or ‘influence’ a government policy.” Many of us are deeply concerned about the recent wave of mass shootings and hate crimes that have taken place across the United States. As the Department of Justice reported , in 2018 alone there were 25 race-based terrorist attacks on U.S. soil, each committed by an alleged white supremacist. Immediate action is needed to address this crisis and tragedies like the Aug. 3 shooting in El Paso, Texas. By Mike SiegelReality Check: Bank of England Governor Criticizes the Petrodollar! When a capitalist governor of an imperialist nation’s central bank says alternatives to the US dollar are necessary, big change is afoot. “European-American capitalists are determined to retain their supremacy by any means necessary without regard for friend or foe.” It is remarkable that Bank of England Governor Mark Carney recently spoke publicly about “the U.S. dollar’s “destabilizing” role in the world economy,” going on to suggest that “central banks might need to join together to create their own replacement reserve currency.” This is very significant because in his capacity as Bank of England Governor, Carney serves as Chairman of the Monetary Policy Committee, giving him a major role in directing national economic and monetary policy. By Cheikh Amma DiopAnthem 4 Rappers Wrapped in The Flag                     By Louis JeffersonOh Jay Can U C
By the dawn of Imperialist greed
They will eat u 2
After they fatten u up to deceive
U took the bait
So they call u great
The white man’s oldest trick in the book (More)

The Black Misleadership Class Shuffles Along and Rides Again The president of predominantly Black Hampton University debased himself by speaking at Liberty University, founded by the Christian racist Jerry Falwell. “Black misleaders have convinced the masses that neo-colonialism is the reasonable and viable replacement for colonialism.” “…Jomo Kenyatta formed an excellent revolution without education and all he did as the end thing was tell the people…I’m your brother, I helped you lead the revolution now I’m going to oppress you… Papa Doc in Haiti…he moved all of the White people out and he took over being the oppressor because of no education…Jomo Kenyatta is not called a never revolutionary but an ex-revolutionary…so is Papa Doc… Without education you have neo-colonialism instead of colonialism…you might get people caught up in the emotionalist movement…and because they are poor they’ll want more and before we know it we will have capitalist and before you know it we’ll have Negro imperialist…”  Fred Hampton – “The Importance of Education Prior To Action” By AnonymousJussie Smollett, the Chicago Police Department, and the Appearing/Disappearing Video Footage Trick  The cops “investigating” the Smollett case have long records of racist brutality, evidence tampering and lying – facts the corporate media ignored. “The nation heard a daily, jarring cacophony: CPD bragging about how great its detective work is.” They say tell it like is, so… It’s 2019. Trump is president.  Racist and general hate speech has become common.  Jussie Smollett is attacked in such a hate crime.  The corporate media, Chicago media, Trump, Mayor Rahm Coverup Emanuel, and the Chicago Police Department all say Smollett is a damn liar.
Standing at literal podiums, they shared opinions about Jussie and concluded by declaring him guilty — before the trial. CPD agrees, Trump agrees, corporate media agrees, Chicago city officials who-never-address-rampant-CPD-corruption agree, Mayor Emanuel agrees.  Case closed. By Chelli Stanley Gambians Glued to YouTube as President’s Hit Squad Confesses Deposed Gambian President Jahya Jammeh, a strong ally of the US, was a mass killer whose henchmen are now confessing on streaming media. “Jammeh is in exile in Equatorial Guinea, where he has been granted refuge.” Truth is stranger than fiction and in the west African nation of Gambia, the truth has galvanized citizens with former members of the exiled president’s hit squad admit to murder and other atrocities. Gambians are watching the confessions, given in a highly public truth and reconciliation commission hearing, that are being streamed live on a YouTube channel. By Global Information Network

The People Who Think Bernie Is Moderate  To socialist candidates, even the left-most Democrat isn’t left enough. “Third parties argue that the Democratic Party is irredeemably compromised and that voters deserve true alternatives.” Senator Elizabeth Warren wants new taxes on wealth. Senator Bernie Sanders wants Medicare for All. Senator Cory Booker wants guaranteed jobs. Jeff Mackler wants the elimination of the military budget, the nationalization of the energy and banking industries, open borders, the creation of a state-run health-care system, and the end of capitalism in the United States. A member of the Trotskyist party Socialist Action, Mackler is one of a handful of true, full-fat, no-joke socialist candidates running or considering running for president in 2020. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell looks at the Democratic primary and sees the proposed Cubafication of the country; Mackler looks at it and sees neoliberal accommodationism. “Bernie gets a little attention when he says things like, ‘Three people in the United States control half the wealth in the country,’” he told me with a chuckle. “He has no proposal to change that in any way!” By Annie Lowrey Israel’s Scramble for Africa: Selling Water, Weapons and Lies Many African governments are giving Israel exactly what it wants – a way to break out of its isolation and legitimize its Apartheid. “Israel has won the support of some of Africa’s ruling classes, but it has failed to win the African people.” For years, Kenya has served as Israel’s gateway to Africa. Israel has been using the strong political, economic and security relations between the two states as a way to expand its influence on the continent and turn other African nations against Palestine. Unfortunately, Israel’s strategy seems, at least on the surface, to be succeeding – Africa’s historically vocal support for the Palestinian struggle on the international arena is dwindling. By Ramzy Baroud My Wise Country Cousin: de Low-leeta Xpress a Bi-Party-sin Flight  By Raymond Nat Turner, BAR poet-in-residenceHumph, an’ to think dey made “Birth ob de Nation“
spreadin’ dat filth— dat rotten disinformation—
I bet dis what shrinks mean wit dey word, “projekshun?”
(but Boss Tweet big shoe show mosly mis-direkshun…)
White boy-Terris, lak de real rapists, is homegrown—
ax me, it’s bred-in-de-bone—lak testosterone! (More)

Labor:

Economy:Shadow Government Statistics Daily Update (September 3rd to 4th) – (Updated Details)

  • Government-Shutdown Distorted And Delayed Data Have Begun To Surface;
  • Reporting Delays Artificially Boosted The Headline Benchmarked Gdp /The Shutdown-Delayed;
  • September 3rd Annual Benchmark Revisions to Construction Spending Showed Much Weaker Activity Second-Quarter 2018 to Date;
  • Benchmark Revised GDP Has Been Overstated;
  • Recent History Would Be Weaker Had the Construction Detail Been Available When Scheduled;
  • Consider that Revised Nominal Year-to-Year Construction Spending Turned Negative in 4q2018 and After, Previously Holding Positive Until 2q2019;
  • Last Time Annual Growth Turned Negative Was 1q2008, at Onset of the Great Recession / Prior to the Construction Benchmarking, a Negligible First Revision of Second-Quarter GDP to 2.04% (Initially 2.06%) Annualized Real Growth, Accompanied Initial Estimates of GDI at 2.11% and GNP at 3.18% ;
  • Benchmark-Revised Patterns of Rapidly Slowing Real Annual Growth Continued
  • New Recession Remains in Play;
  • Payroll Employment Growth Was Hit by Massive Preliminary Downside Benchmark Revision of 501,000 (-501,000) Jobs
  • Major Implications for FOMC Easing and Next Round of GDP Benchmarking

Shadow Government Statistics Alternate Gross Domestic Product Chart The SGS-Alternate GDP reflects the inflation-adjusted, or real, year-to-year GDP change, adjusted for distortions in government inflation usage and methodological changes that have resulted in a built-in upside bias to official reporting.

Wall Street’s Trading Secrets: This U.S. Senator Wants to Keep You in the Dark  On July 29, those savvy market watchers at Themis Trading posted a report on their blog about how a Republican Senator from Louisiana (about 1400 miles from Wall Street) had taken a peculiar interest in the long-delayed system that would shine a bright light on who might be rigging stock trading on any particular day. The system is called the Consolidated Audit Trail (CAT) and the Securities and Exchange Commission has been stalling its creation for the entire 85 years the SEC has existed and been charged with investor protection. The idea of the CAT is to spot illegal and manipulative trading and pinpoint exactly what firms and individuals are placing the trades by looking at real-time data. A stock market without a CAT is nothing more than a thinly disguised wealth transfer system for the one percent and, apparently, Senator John Kennedy (R-Louisiana) wants to keep it that way. By Pam Martens and Russ Martens

World: 

Britain heads for a general election: mobilise for a Corbyn victory!  His government is just two days old, but Boris Johnson has already managed to lose his majority and rack up two defeats in the House of Commons. No government in history has faced such an immediate losing streak. This demonstrates how weak the Tory leader and his regime are.  Everything is balanced on a knife edge. The situation is changing by the hour. Events could rapidly swing in either direction. This reflects the instability and volatility that is inherent within this deep crisis of Britain’s entire political and constitutional system.British Lawmakers Win Vote to Debate Bill Authorising Brexit Delay MPs voted Tuesday evening to take control of parliament’s business and pursue the passage of a cross-party bill to prevent the Conservative government of Prime Minister Boris Johnson from leaving the European Union (EU) without a trade and customs deal. MPs backed the motion to allow a debate on the bill today by 328 votes to 301, a majority of 27. Twenty-one Tory MPs rebelled despite threats to withdraw the party whip and prevent them from standing for re-election for the party. Responding to the defeat, Johnson said he would table a motion Wednesday for a vote on holding a general election before October 17—the final date that European Union (EU) leaders are able to agree a deal with the UK on its exit terms. By Robert Stevens

Hong Kong: extradition bill withdrawn – class struggle must continue! The mass movement in Hong Kong has just won its key demand – the withdrawal of the hated extradition bill that would allow anyone the Beijing government suspects of criminality to be extradited to the mainland. But none of the other four demands, such as for an independent investigation into police brutality, have been won. Daniel Morley and Parson YoungFollowing Months of Protests and Outrage, Hong Kong Leader Withdraws Extradition Bill “We all hope to find a way out of the current impasse and unsettling times,” said Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam By Jake JohnsonApartheid Had Always Been the Plan What do wealthy capitalists do in response to the ever present threat of nuclear annihilation or a biosphere teetering on the edge of collapse? Why they build enormous, fortified bunkers deep underground, of course. Here they can live like the descendants of the mammals that survived the extinction of the dinosaurs in the late Cretaceous and early Paleocene around 65 to 100 million years ago. The long deceased necrolestes patagonensis, whose shockingly appropriate meaning for this comparison is “grave robber,” are the descendants of the cronopio who narrowly escaped the dinosaurs’ fate by burrowing deep under the earth’s soil. By Kenn Orphan

The North Entrance Tto The Cheyenne Mountain Complex in Colorado – Public Domain

Health, Education, and Welfare:

The government of the United States can pass laws in a few days to spend tens of trillions of dollars for war and the bailout of Wall Street and the bankers. Yet, those who ‘govern’, pass universal healthcare for themselves, but they cannot spend even one trillion dollars for universal health for those who are ‘governed’! This is what is considered, by the powers the to be,  a democracy and part of the democratic way. — Roland Sheppard, Let The People Vote on Healthcare

Replacing Ideology With Class “The genius of any slave system is found in the dynamics which isolate slaves from each other, obscure the reality of a common condition, and make united rebellion against the oppressor inconceivable.” —Andrea Dworkin  There is something very peculiar about how politics is talked about. The things that are true and proven to work are called “left” while the things that are false and are proven to fail are called “right”. This is why upon education most everyone becomes left, barring a greater force than truth itself in one’s interest in education. This is an unprecedented dynamic. Take any other field. In mathematics, in science, in language, truth is proven and then more or less accepted. In politics this isn’t the case. Despite things such as socialism, peace, education, regulation, housing and equality always working, there remains a debate about whether or not these things work. By Nick Pemberton

Daily News Digest August 30, 2019

Daily News Digest August 30, 2019

Daily News Digest Achives

Since World War I, ‘the war to end all wars’, there have been perpetual wars for perpetual peace, this Laura Gray’s cartoon from the front page of The Militant August 18, 1945, under banner headline: “There Is No Peace” Could Still Be Published Today!

During This Economic Crisis, Capitalism’s Three Point Political Program: Austerity, Scapegoat Blacks, Minorities, and ‘Illegal’ Immigrants for Unemployment, and  The Iron Heel.

Democracy?:  As the Capitalist Robber Barons Steal from the 99%: Only the 1% Voted For Austerity — The 99% Should Decide On Austerity — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From Austerity!  Under Austerity, All of the World Will Eventually Be Pauperized, Humbled, and Desecrated Like Greece and Puerto Rico.    Socialism Means True Democracy — The 99% Will Rule! — Not the Few!

Images of the Day:

A Top Financier of Trump And Mcconnell is a Driving Force Behind Amazon DeforestationQuotes of the Day:

“If Boris Johnson thinks he can suspend parliament and force through no deal he has another think coming. We will build a mass movement to save democracy, and everyone who wants to stop this travesty must get ready to mobilize, demonstrate and resist.” —Clive Lewis, UK Labour Party MP — ‘Just the Beginning’: Massive Protests in UK as Thousands Flood Streets to #StoptheCoupBrazil has gotten a huge amount of bad press with the fires in the Amazon with the emphasis on the harm its development policies are doing to efforts to limit global warming. While the policies of Brazil’s right-wing president, Jair Bolsonaro, are disastrous, there is an important part of the story that is being left out of most discussions.The reason that we are worried about global warming is because rich countries, most importantly the United States, have been spewing huge amounts of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere for well over a century, while destroying the native forests on their lands. They also have paid to have forests in other countries destroyed in order to meet their resource needs. This is the context in which the destruction of the Amazon is a worldwide problem of enormous proportions. (The Amazon is treasure which should be preserved even if global warming was not a crisis, but that is a different matter.) — Brazil, the Amazon, and Global WarmingIn the case of rubber tires, the problem is more complex than mere latex allergy, although this may well turn out to be a serious public health problem by itself. The high dollar cost of truck freight, private automobile commuting, and maintenance of our highway infrastructure must be counted as major sacrifices to our rubber-tired transportation system. Furthermore, fine particle air pollution now kills an estimated 60,000 Americans in cities each year. [7]And global warming is a serious threat to many nations from many viewpoints. (See REHW #429, #430.) However, from the viewpoint of our most important national treasure — our self-governing democracy — the systematic sabotage of the nation’s electric/rail mass transit systems by automobile corporations points up a most serious problem: the ability of “private” corporations to effect sweeping changes in our public life and culture, without public accountability or even debate. If we ever hope to achieve a sustainable environment, and re-establish a fair economy and a working democracy, this is a key problem we will have to acknowledge and address. — Peter Montague, TIRE DUST

The raid by federal agents of the home of one of the most prominent national union officials, coming on the eve of the expiration of contracts for over 155,000 General Motors, Ford and Fiat Chrysler workers, is virtually unprecedented. Coming on the heels of the expansion of the corruption indictments to officials from the UAW-GM department—including Michael Grimes, the top aide of former UAW Vice President Joe Ashton (who has also been implicated)—the raids underscore what the vast majority of autoworkers know: that the UAW is a criminal syndicate, completely hostile to workers’ interests. — Breaking: FBI raids UAW President Gary Jones’ home, as workers vote to strike at GM, Ford and Chrysler

Videos of the Day:

Thousands March in London Demanding New Brexit Referendum

Climate Activist Greta Thunberg Arrives in NYCto Fight “Biggest Crisis Humanity Has Ever Faced”

Residents Outraged City Won’t Commit to 100% Affordable Housing

Johnson Shuts Down Parliament to Help Ensure No-Deal Brexit

CEO Compensation Increased 940% Between 1978 and 2018, Workers’ Only by 12%

‘It is not letting me vote for who I want’: Video shows electronic machine changing ballot in Mississippi

“We’re in a Crisis of Deaths”: Migrant Death Toll Tops 900 in Mediterranean as 40 Die Off Libya

How Bolsonaro’s Climate Change Denial & Anti-Indigenous Policies Led to Massive Fires in the Amazon

Airstrikes in Lebanon, Syria & Iraq Mark Dangerous Escalation in Decades-Long Israeli Aggression

Watch Richard Sackler Deny His Family’s Role in the Opioid Crisis Sackler testified in 2015 in a lawsuit brought by Kentucky against his family’s company, Purdue Pharma, which makes the painkiller OxyContin. We published the transcript in February. Now you can see the video.

U.S.:

The United States is not a Democracy (A government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly)! Only the 1%, through their ownership of the Republicrats and who profit from war and the war budget, vote for War and the war budget — A policy, which Gore Vidal called a  Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace. — The 99% Should Decide On War — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From War!  Under a Democracy, The 99% would have the right to vote on the policy of Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace! The United States takes from the poor and gives to the Rich

Environment:

Sociopathic Disregard for the Future’: Trump EPA Set to Gut Restrictions on Planet-Warming Methane Emissions  “At a time when the federal government’s job should be to help localities and states move faster toward cleaner energy and a cleaner economy, the government is walking off the field.” By Jake Johnson

Civil Rights/Black Liberation:

Is Warren Talented Enough to Betray the People as Masterfully as Obama?  Elizabeth Warren is seen as a counter Bernie Sanders, but she will melt (like Joe Biden and Kamala Harris) if she stops raising Democrats’ expectations to bust corporate power. “The Democrats cannot beat Trump unless they run on a program of austerity-busting.”If BAR managing editor Bruce Dixon had not passed away in June, he would be having a field day with Monday’s New York Times article  describing Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s assiduous “courting” of big-wig Democrats, assuring them of her rock-hard loyalty to the party, in supposed contrast to Bernie Sanders’ call  for “a mass movement, a political revolution in this country.” The Times makes a convincing case that Warren – now in a three-way tie  with Sanders and Joe Biden, according to a new Monmouth Poll – is craftily courting the super-delegates that will cast decisive votes on the second ballot of a brokered convention. Bruce would call it the barking of rival sheep dogs, both of whom are committed to keeping left-leaning voters safely within the Democratic herd. By Glen Ford, Black Agend Report executive editor

At the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Preserving the Reputations of Sexual HarassersAn administrator resigned amid sexual harassment accusations. Another college hired him. A professor was found to have stalked a coworker. She agreed to retire, then won a Fulbright grant. Campus leaders vow reforms, but many say it’s a long road. By Rachel Otwell, and Alex Mierjeski

Labor:

Breaking: FBI raids UAW President Gary Jones’ home, as workers vote to strike at GM, Ford and ChryslerAccording to reports in the Detroit media, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Internal Revenue Service raided the home of United Auto Workers President Gary Jones, the California home of former UAW President Dennis Williams, and a number of other UAW locations Wednesday morning, marking a major escalation of the years-long US federal investigation into corruption and bribery of UAW leaders. By Marcus Day

Pensions Are Not Guaranteed!

The idea that Social Security has to be funded by its beneficiaries has been a setup for the wealthy to claim that the government budget doesn’t have enough money to keep paying. Social Security may begin to run a budget deficit. After having run a surplus since 1933, for 70 years, now we have to begin paying some of this savings out. That’s called a deficit, as if it’s a disaster and we have to begin cutting back Social Security. The implication is that wage earners will have to starve in the street after they retire.

The Federal Reserve has just published statistics saying the average American family, 55 and 60 years old, only has about $14,000 worth of savings. This isn’t nearly enough to retire on. There’s also been a vast looting of pension funds, largely by Wall Street. That’s why the investment banks have had to pay tens of billions of dollars of penalties for cheating pension funds and other investors. The current risk-free rate of return is 0.1% on government bonds, so the pension funds don’t have enough money to pay pensions at the rate that their junk economics advisors forecast. The money that people thought was going to be available for their retirement, all of a sudden isn’t. The pretense is that nobody could have forecast this!

There are so many corporate pension funds that are going bankrupt that the Pension Benefit Guarantee Corporation doesn’t have enough money to bail them out. The PBGC is in deficit. If you’re going to be a corporate raider, if you’re going to be a Governor Romney or whatever and you take over a company, you do what Sam Zell did with the Chicago Tribune: You loot the pension fund, you empty it out to pay the bondholders that have lent you the money to buy out the company. You then tell the workers, “I’m sorry there is nothing there. It’s wiped out.” Half of the employee stock ownership programs go bankrupt. That was already a critique made in the 1950s and ‘60s.  — Michael Hudson, Stock Market Investing: Good Enough for Public Employee and Union Pension Funds

Economy:

The Federal Debt has Gone Up 400% Since the War on Terror Began! (See Chart Below)

The Bizarre Action in U.S. Treasuries Is Linked to the U.S. National Debt and the Repeal of the Glass-Steagall Act Yesterday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 258 points but the yield on the 10-Year U.S. Treasury fell below 1.50 percent. In a normal market, if stocks are rallying that means there is confidence in the trajectory of economic growth in the U.S. When yields are collapsing on U.S. Treasuries, that means there is no confidence of sustained growth in the economy. So you can see why yesterday’s market activity is a serious contradiction of norms. We believe the Treasury market is already discounting (looking ahead and factoring in) what the next recession is going to look like because of constraints on how much fiscal spending the Federal government can deploy. By Pam Martens And Russ Martens

The Extortion Economy: How Insurance Companies Are Fueling a Rise in Ransomware AttacksEven when public agencies and companies hit by ransomware could recover their files on their own, insurers prefer to pay the ransom. Why? The attacks are good for business. by Renee Dudley

World:

The Commonwealth of Britain Bill Proposed by Tony Benn And Seconded By Jeremy Corbyn In 1991 Is Even More Urgent Today I think anyone who considers themselves a radical democratic should support this bill — Tariq Ali:

  • The monarchy would be abolished and the constitutional status of the Crown ended;
  • The Church of England would be disestablished;
  • The head of state would be a president, elected by a joint sitting of both Houses of the Commonwealth Parliament
  • The functions of the royal prerogative would be transferred to Parliament;
  • The Privy Council would be abolished, and replaced by a Council of State;
  • The House of Lords would be replaced by an elected House of the People, with equal representation of men and women;
  • The House of Commons would similarly have equal representation of men and women;
  • England, Scotland and Wales would have their own devolved National Parliaments with responsibility for devolved matters as agreed;
  • County Court judges and magistrates would be elected; and
  • British jurisdiction over Northern Ireland would be ended.
  • The judiciary would be reformed and a National Legal Service would be created

Health, Education, and Welfare:

The government of the United States can pass laws in a few days to spend tens of trillions of dollars for war and the bailout of Wall Street and the bankers. Yet, those who ‘govern’, pass universal healthcare for themselves, but they cannot spend even one trillion dollars for universal health for those who are ‘governed’! This is what is considered, by the powers the to be,  a democracy and part of the democratic way. — Roland Sheppard, Let The People Vote on Healthcare

Daily News Digest August 29, 2019

Daily News Digest August 29, 2019

Daily News Digest Achives

Since World War I, ‘the war to end all wars’, there have been perpetual wars for perpetual peace, this Laura Gray’s cartoon from the front page of The Militant August 18, 1945, under banner headline: “There Is No Peace” Could Still Be Published Today!

During This Economic Crisis, Capitalism’s Three Point Political Program: Austerity, Scapegoat Blacks, Minorities, and ‘Illegal’ Immigrants for Unemployment, and  The Iron Heel.

Democracy?:  As the Capitalist Robber Barons Steal from the 99%: Only the 1% Voted For Austerity — The 99% Should Decide On Austerity — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From Austerity!  Under Austerity, All of the World Will Eventually Be Pauperized, Humbled, and Desecrated Like Greece and Puerto Rico.    Socialism Means True Democracy — The 99% Will Rule! — Not the Few!

Images of the Day:

Capitalism Ignores Its’ Environmental Destruction As the Earth Burns — Signe Wilkinson: Political Cartoon: Kids! Have we got a hot potato world for you!

Quotes of the Day:

The World Capitalist ruling class, the 1%, has followed the advice of James Madison in their implementation of austerity. .  Madison  once stated: . . . I believe there are more instances of the abridgment of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments, by those in power, than by violent and sudden usurpations. On a candid examination of history, we shall find that turbulence, violence, and abuse of power by the majority trampling on the rights of the minority, have produced factions and commotions, which in republics, have more frequently than any other cause produced despotism. If we go over the whole history of the ancient and modern republics, we shall find their destruction to have generally resulted from those causes. . . The have been slowly undermining democratic forms, until now we are now confronted by the spectre of naked capitalist class executive rule of the world — Roland Sheppard

The proposed bill would create a broad definition of “domestic terrorism” to include any attempt to “affect” or “influence” government policy or actions. And it would include property damage—even attempted property damage—as a terrorist act subject to a 25-year prison sentence.  In other words, if you opposed the Dakota Access pipeline at Standing Rock and wanted the government to revoke the pipeline permit, you might be considered a terrorist.   If you painted “Black Lives Matter” on a wall to advocate against police violence, that could be terrorism, too.   And if you threw a rock at a bank window to take a stand against the 1% —even if you missed—you could spend half your life in a federal prison. — Dissent Is Being Criminalized Right Under Our Noses

Those Who Can Make You Believe Absurdities, Can Make You Commit Atrocities — Voltair

It is dangerous to be right in matters on which the established authorities are wrong.— Voltaire

Videos of the Day:

Orwellian Surveillance of Tohono O’odham Nation – A Test Case for Entire US Border?

Racial Inequality Is Rooted in Denial of Home and Land Ownership

The Homeless in Mortal Danger During Southwest Heatwave

Jeremy Corby: We Must Find Common Ground and a Practical Way to Stop This Disastrous No Deal Brexit

U.S.:

The United States is not a Democracy (A government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly)! Only the 1%, through their ownership of the Republicrats and who profit from war and the war budget, vote for War and the war budget — A policy, which Gore Vidal called a  Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace. — The 99% Should Decide On War — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From War!  Under a Democracy, The 99% would have the right to vote on the policy of Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace! The United States takes from the poor and gives to the Rich!

Washington invokes “domestic terrorism” to justify police state ruleBehind the backs of the population, a bipartisan group of US lawmakers, military leaders and intelligence agents are engaged in a secret operation to endow the executive branch with dictatorial powers to suppress social opposition in the United States. On July 27, Donald Trump offered a glimpse of this movement within the state apparatus, tweeting, “Consideration is being given to declaring ANTIFA … a major Organization of Terror (along with MS-13 & others). Would make it easier for police to do their job!” On August 17, Trump repeated the same threat. . . . Trump is not merely expressing a personal opinion. In the face of growing strikes and protests and mounting social unrest internationally, the American ruling class is acknowledging that maintaining the flow of corporate profits and defending unprecedented levels of social inequality against the opposition of the broad masses of people requires dictatorial forms of rule. Under conditions in which three US billionaires control as much wealth as half the US population, even the worn-out forms of democratic rule have become untenable.Dissent Is Being Criminalized Right Under Our Noses Many of us are deeply concerned about the recent wave of mass shootings and hate crimes that have taken place across the United States. As the Department of Justice reported, in 2018 alone there were 25 race-based terrorist attacks on U.S. soil, each committed by an alleged white supremacist. Immediate action is needed to address this crisis and tragedies like the Aug. 3 shooting in El Paso, Texas. So I read with interest a recent press release of Rep. Michael McCaul—the Republican incumbent in the Texas 10th Congressional District and my opponent in the 2018 election—in which he announced a new bill to respond to domestic terrorism. My hopes for reasonable legislation were quickly dashed, however, and replaced by deep concern. By Michael SiegelAs Tropical Storm Dorian Barrels Toward Puerto Rico, Trump Shifting $155 Million in Disaster Aid Funds to Migrant Detention “The money that could be used to help Puerto Rico will instead be used to detain more children and parents in concentration camps.” By Jake JohnsonThe U.S. Border Patrol and an Israeli Military Contractor are Putting a Native American Reservation Under “Persistent Surveillance” On the southwestern end of the Tohono O’odham Nation’s reservation, roughly 1 mile from a barbed-wire barricade marking Arizona’s border with the Mexican state of Sonora, Ofelia Rivas leads me to the base of a hill overlooking her home. A U.S. Border Patrol truck is parked roughly 200 yards upslope. A small black mast mounted with cameras and sensors is positioned on a trailer hitched to the truck. For Rivas, the Border Patrol’s monitoring of the reservation has been a grim aspect of everyday life. And that surveillance is about to become far more intrusive. By Will ParrishEnvironment:

With Amazon in Flames, Trump Moves to Open 16.7 Million-Acre Alaskan Rainforest to Corporate Exploitation “If the planet could talk, it would be screaming in agony or weeping in despair. Maybe both.”  By Jake JohnsonBolsonaro Fiddles While the Amazon Burns Of course, my title conjures up images of the Emperor Nero (37-68 A.D.) fiddling while ancient Rome burned, and for many reasons, this mythwas a historical falsehood. Fiddles did not exist in 64 A.D. when a great fire ravaged ancient Rome, but stringed instruments did nonetheless, like the citharaand lyre. Moreover, Nero himself was not responsible for the conflagration. He was away at his villa but quickly returned to Rome to deal with the crisis. Even so, the myth supports the notion that Nero was an idle and an incompetent governor. Regardless of whether or not he was responsible for Rome’s burning, to many, Emperor Nero, was incapable of leading the empire. Nero was overly self-indulgent and had more thespian ambitions than political ones. By J.P. Linstroth

Glyphosate Sprayed on GMO Crops Linked to Lake Erie’s Toxic Algae BloomGlyphosate, the controversial main ingredient in Monsanto‘s Roundup and other herbicides, is being connected to Lake Erie’s troubling algae blooms, which has fouled drinking water and suffocated and killed marine life in recent years. Phosphorus—attributed to farm runoff carried by the Maumee River—has long been identified as a leading culprit feeding the excessive blooms in the western Lake Erie basin. Now, according to a new study from chemistry professor Christopher Spiese, a significant correlation has been established between the increased use of glyphosate to the percentage of dissolved reactive phosphorus (DRP) in the runoff. By Lorraine ChowIn BP’s Final $20 Billion Gulf Settlement, U.S. Taxpayers Subsidize $15.3 Billion2010 gulf oil spill, it is appropriate to look at the overall societal costs, as well as the bottom line to BP. And at tax time, people understandably think about their own taxes, too. The government struck a $20 billion settlement with BP, which is a big number. Yet BP should be able to deduct the vast majority, a whopping $15.3 billion, on its U.S. tax return. That means American taxpayers are contributing quite a lot to this settlement, whether they know it or not. By  Robert W. WoodCivil Rights/Black Liberation:

Jeffery Epstein, Jay-Z, and the Miserable World Created by the Billionaire Ruling ClassJeffery Epstein and Jay-Z are not the same, but they have the same class interests. These interests have been the subject of much debate in recent weeks, with Epstein’s reported death and Jay-Z’s lucrative collaboration with the National Football League (NFL) dominating headlines. Epstein’s supposed suicide in a Manhattan cell served as a catalyst for heightened suspicions about foul play and whether his connections to prominent ruling elites such as the Clinton family, Donald Trump, and Israeli intelligence rendered him vulnerable to murder. Jay-Z’s deal with the NFL inserted Colin Kaepernick’s protest of racist policing back into the political conversation. What isn’t being talked about is how Epstein and Jay-Z are much more than mere “bad actors.” They are representatives of the billionaire ruling class responsible for much of the misery that exists on this planet.  By Danny Haiphong , BAR contributor Slick Willy Rides Again! By Raymond Nat Turner, BAR poet-in-residence                                                                    Don’t know if it was the Bible
That said it, or if it was Confucius—
Or, if I just made this shit up:
“Beware of the one riding in
Bareback, facing backwards on
An ol’ mule, for he is an impostor!”
Lo and behold, The Great White
Foundation Father, Vice-
Roy of Haiti and Harlem, nurse-
Maid of NAFTA, demon of de-
Regulation, did it with class in
Tobacco country stables, Offal
Office of the DNC dog and pony show (More)

California Lawmakers Consider Ethnic Studies Mandate For Nation’s Largest University System The mandate would affect a system of almost half a million students, 74 percent of them minorities.” “The White male administrators who run the CSU are trying to kill the bill.”California lawmakers are considering a bill that would mandate students enrolled in the nation’s largest four-year public university system  take a qualifying Ethnic Studies course in order to graduate. The requirement would apply to the schools that comprise California State University (CSU), which collectively educate approximately 481,000 students. According  to CBS News’ Sacramento affiliate, “all 23 campuses in the system are pushing back on the proposed legislation.” Still, the measure passed the state Assembly in May and is currently being considered by the Senate. By Jeffrey CawoodThe Great Land Robbery  A war waged by deed of title has dispossessed 98 percent of black agricultural landowners in America. “Any conversation about reparations must consider the land.”  I. Wiped Out “You ever chop before?” Willena Scott-White was testing me. I sat with her in the cab of a Chevy Silverado pickup truck, swatting at the squadrons of giant, fluttering mosquitoes that had invaded the interior the last time she opened a window. I was spending the day with her family as they worked their fields just outside Ruleville, in Mississippi’s Leflore County. With her weathered brown hands, Scott-White gave me a pork sandwich wrapped in a grease-stained paper towel. I slapped my leg. Mosquitoes can bite through denim, it turns out. By Vann R. Newkirk IINeoliberal Capitalism at a Dead End  Donald Trump’s resort to protectionism is recognition of having reached this cul-de-sac. “Neoliberal capitalism has no vision for reinventing itself.” Harry Magdoff’s The Age of Imperialism is a classic work that shows how postwar political decolonization does not negate the phenomenon of imperialism. The book has two distinct aspects. On the one hand, it follows in V. I. Lenin’s footsteps in providing a comprehensive account of how capitalism at the time operated globally. On the other hand, it raises a question that is less frequently discussed in Marxist literature—namely, the need for imperialism. Here, Magdoff not only highlighted the crucial importance, among other things, of the third world’s raw materials for metropolitan capital, but also refuted the argument that the declining share of raw-material value in gross manufacturing output somehow reduced this importance, making the simple point that there can be no manufacturing at all without raw materials.1 By Utsa Patnaik and Prabhat PatnaikThe Quiet Death of the “White Bernie Bro” Attack  The Quiet Death of the “White Bernie Bro” Attack A majority of Sanders supporters are non-white, in contrast to all the other top tier candidates, including Kamala Harris. “Enthusiasm for another Sanders run has been remarkably inflected by race.”Bernie Sanders faced ferocious criticism in the media throughout the 2016 primaries — and central to that critique was what the Washington Post called Bernie Sanders’s big black-voter problem . Black voters, we were told, decisively rejected Sanders’s politics — and, by extension, left flank challenges to the Democratic establishment. And the proof was in the polls: overwhelming majorities of black voters preferred Hillary Clinton.  By Carl BeijerAn Axis of Hope, Dignity and Defiance stands up to the Triumvirate of Evil  The Quiet Death of the “White Bernie Bro” Attack A majority of Sanders supporters are non-white, in contrast to all the other top tier candidates, including Kamala Harris. “Enthusiasm for another Sanders run has been remarkably inflected by race.”Bernie Sanders faced ferocious criticism in the media throughout the 2016 primaries — and central to that critique was what the Washington Post called Bernie Sanders’s big black-voter problem .  Black voters, we were told, decisively rejected Sanders’s politics — and, by extension, left flank challenges to the Democratic establishment. And the proof was in the polls: overwhelming majorities of black voters preferred Hillary Clinton.  By Gerald A. PerreiraPerpetual Debt in the Silicon Savannah  Kenya’s poor were among the first to benefit from digital lending apps; now they call it slavery. “The emergent regimes of indebtedness have been called ‘catastrophic,’ a ‘crisis,’ and a major ‘social problem.’” Across conversations in Kenya’s pubs and WhatsApp groups, debt is on everyone’s mind. The speed and ease of access to credit through new mobile apps delivers cash to millions of Kenyans in need, but many struggle to repay. Despite their small size, the loans come with a big cost—sometimes as much as 100 percent annualized.As one Nairobian told us, these apps “give you money gently, and then they come for your neck.” He is not alone in his assessment of “fintech,” the ballooning financial technology industry that provides loans through mobile apps. During our research, we heard these emergent regimes of indebtedness called “catastrophic,” a “crisis,” and a major “social problem.” Newspapers report that mobile lending underlays a wave of domestic disarray, violence, and even suicide. One young man in Meru described it as a “can of worries.” His monthly salary was not enough to cover ordinary expenses such as rent and necessary contributions to extended kin networks—let alone leisure or investments in his own future. So, like millions of others, he turned to phone-based loans, at one point toggling between five different apps. Reeling as the costs added up, he struggled to repay, deleting the apps so he would not be tempted by repeated offers of dangerous debt. By Kevin P. Donovan and Emma ParkThe Precarity of Black Motherhood  Jordan Peele’s “Us” depicts the terros face by Black mothers in a way that owes as much to Toni Morrison’s “Beloved” as it does to classic Hollywood horror. “This is America, a human chain of murderers, stretched from sea to shining sea, a fulfillment of Manifest Destiny.” In Jordan Peele’s latest film Us, which follows on the success of his 2017 hit Get Out, an affluent black family has its home invaded by sinister doppelgängers—a sort of literalization of W.E.B. Du Bois’s noion of black “double consciousness.” Perhaps Peele even had in mind Du Bois’s famous sentence: “One ever feels his two-ness,—an American, a Negro; two souls, two thoughts, two unreconciled strivings; two warring ideals in one dark body, whose dogged strength alone keeps it from being torn asunder.” By Tao Leigh Goffe“Dirtbag,” “Savages,” “Subhuman”: A Border Agent’s Hateful Career and the Crime That Finally Ended It  The agent joked about how tasty Guatemalan migrants can be if they are properly “fried” through the use of Tasers.  “Border Patrol agent Matthew Bowen had been investigated for years before he used his 4,000-pound truck to assault a fleeing migrant.”  It was late November 2017, and Matthew Bowen, a veteran Border Patrol agent, was seething. A fellow Border Patrol agent in Texas had just been found dead in the field, and Bowen was certain someone who’d been crossing the border illegally was responsible for murdering him.  “Snuffed out by some dirtbag,” Bowen, stationed in Nogales, Arizona, said in a text later obtained by federal authorities.  Bowen, if lacking in evidence, wasn’t alone in his anger and suspicion. President Donald Trump, nearing the end of his first year in office and already frustrated in his bid to construct a wall on the southern border, had promised to “seek out and bring to justice those responsible ” for the Texas agent’s death. Brandon Judd, the head of the union that represents Border Patrol ag ents, declared to Fox News and other media outlets that the Texas agent had been “ambushed .”By A.C. ThompsonLabor:

Economy:The Justice Department Has Had the Epstein Case Since July 2006 – It’s Time to Arrest Accomplices More than two dozen women who have accused Jeffrey Epstein of sexually assaulting them, most when they were underage girls, appeared in Federal Court in Manhattan yesterday. Some had their lawyers read their statement but 16 spoke on their own behalf. The theme consistent throughout their testimony is that the Justice Department must prosecute Epstein’s accomplices – anything less is a failure of justice. Two names were repeatedly mentioned by the women: Ghislaine Maxwell and Sarah Kellen. But the powerful royalty, lawyers and Wall Street titans who have been accused of being part of Epstein’s ring and participating in sexual assaults of underage girls must also be charged by the perpetually recalcitrant U.S. Justice Department. By Pam Martens and Russ Martens

World:

Coup-Like Suspension of Parliament Sends UK Hurtling Toward BrexitBritish Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s “do-or-die” October 31 deadline for Britain to leave the EU is fast approaching. And, as it does so, the political battles — both within the U.K. and between those hoping to shape post-Brexit Britain’s international role — are intensifying. This morning, Johnson took the constitutionally extraordinary step of asking Queen Elizabeth II — the U.K.’s official head of state — to suspend Parliament from mid-September to mid-October. The queen approved the request, which will be the longest suspension of Parliament since 1945. BY  Sasha Abramsky

Britain: Boris’ Brexit bombshell leaves Westminster in disarray as parliament is prorogued Not since Oliver Cromwell’s dismissal of the Rump Parliament – with the words “In the name of God, go!” – has Britain been plunged into such a deep national and constitutional crisis. Lacking a written constitution, the British establishment relies on a web of convention and precedent. Now Boris Johnson has pushed this informal system to its limits, using ‘convention’ to request that the Queen suspend Parliament for over a month, in an effort to prevent opposition MPs from blocking a no-deal Brexit.They’re not wildfires: it’s “Bolivian-style” capitalism The Chiquitania region of Bolivia has been on fire since early August. The wildfires started on 2 August both west and east from San José de Chiquitos in woodland areas and dry woods, reaching Roboré later on. Prime Minister Quintana accused the right-wing of provoking the fires for political and electoral purposes. Until he can prove this, we’ll have to take his statement as an assumption that the wildfires did not spread from Brazil, as the government initially claimed. Rather, the cause of this disaster is to be found inside Bolivia’s borders. The truth is that Quintana’s allegations, similar to those made by the far-right Bolsonaro, can’t by any means hide the government’s accountability. For years, the bourgeoisie from the eastern regions has benefited from a number of laws legalising forest clearing, burnings and human expansion into forest areas under the pretext of “expanding land borders” to achieve “food sovereignty”, or giving some respite to an economy hampered by the drop of gas and mineral exports by producing bioethanol and GM food. Deforestation and burning contribute to global warming: as stated by experts and MAS (Morales’ party) itself in all climate summits, even in Cochabamba, where they are the self-proclaimed “defender of Mother Earth”.

Health, Education, and Welfare:

The government of the United States can pass laws in a few days to spend tens of trillions of dollars for war and the bailout of Wall Street and the bankers. Yet, those who ‘govern’, pass universal healthcare for themselves, but they cannot spend even one trillion dollars for universal health for those who are ‘governed’! This is what is considered, by the powers the to be,  a democracy and part of the democratic way. — Roland Sheppard, Let The People Vote on Healthcare

Food Safety Resources for Managers and Vendors of Farmers Markets in Texas Farmers markets have grown exponentially in the past two decades; however, there is an increasing need to ensure that fresh produce and other ready-to-eat food commodities sold directly to consumers are safe and free of microbial contamination. Therefore, it is crucial to equip managers and vendors at farmers markets with food safety materials that are engaging and educational. The objective of this study was to survey market managers and vendors to identify food safety educational needs and current food safety practices. Observational studies were conducted at 10 farmers markets (300 vendors) in Houston, Texas, to identify positive and high-risk practices. Based on the results obtained, educational materials in the form of videos and information sheets were developed and disseminated to managers and vendors at Texas farmers markets. Feedback on the educational materials obtained from stakeholders was positive and 88% of market managers and vendors stated that the food safety materials were effective as an educational tool.

The Crumbling, Differed Maintenance, and/or Polluted Infrastructure of the United States:

In Flint, Mich., there’s so much lead in children’s blood that a state of emergency is declaredAlmost immediately after the city started drawing from the Flint River in April 2014, residents began complaining about the water, which they said was cloudy in appearance and emitted a foul odor. Since then, complications from the water coming from the Flint River have only piled up. Although city and state officials initially denied that the water was unsafe, the state issued a notice informing Flint residents that their water contained unlawful levels of trihalomethanes, a chlorine byproduct linked to cancer and other diseases. By By Yanan Wang5,300 U.S. water systems are in violation of lead rules Eighteen million Americans live in communities where the water systems are in violation of the law. Moreover, the federal agency in charge of making sure those systems are safe not only knows the issues exist, but it’s done very little to stop them, according to a new report and information provided to CNN by multiple sources and water experts. “Imagine a cop sitting, watching people run stop signs, and speed at 90 miles per hour in small communities and still doing absolutely nothing about it — knowing the people who are violating the law. And doing nothing. That’s unfortunately what we have now,” said Erik Olson, health program director at Natural Resources Defense Council, which analyzed the EPA’s data for its report. In this case, the “cop” is a combination of the states and the EPA. States are the first line of enforcement, but when they fail — as they did recently in Flint, Michigan — the EPA is supposed to step in. But in many cases, the agency hasn’t.

Lead poisoning— Symptoms: Initially, lead poisoning can be hard to detect — even people who seem healthy can have high blood levels of lead. Signs and symptoms usually don’t appear until dangerous amounts have accumulated.

Lead poisoning symptoms in children:  Signs and symptoms of lead poisoning in children include:

  • Developmental delay
  • Learning difficulties
  • Irritability
  • Loss of appetite
  • Weight loss
  • Sluggishness and fatigue
  • Abdominal pain
  • Vomiting
  • Constipation
  • Hearing loss
  • Seizures
  • Eating things, such as paint chips, that aren’t food (pica)

Lead symptoms in newborns: Babies exposed to lead before birth might:

  • Be born prematurely
  • Have lower birth weight
  • Have slowed growth

Lead poisoning: symptoms in adults: Although children are primarily at risk, lead poisoning is also dangerous for adults. Signs and symptoms in adults might include:

  • High blood pressure
  • Joint and muscle pain
  • Difficulties with memory or concentration
  • Headache
  • Abdominal pain
  • Mood disorders
  • Reduced sperm count and abnormal sperm
  • Miscarriage, stillbirth or premature birth in pregnant women

Daily News Digest August 27, 2019

Daily News Digest August 27, 2019

Daily News Digest Achives

Since World War I, ‘the war to end all wars’, there have been perpetual wars for perpetual peace, this Laura Gray’s cartoon from the front page of The Militant August 18, 1945, under banner headline: “There Is No Peace” Could Still Be Published Today!

During This Economic Crisis, Capitalism’s Three Point Political Program: Austerity, Scapegoat Blacks, Minorities, and ‘Illegal’ Immigrants for Unemployment, and  The Iron Heel.

Democracy?:  As the Capitalist Robber Barons Steal from the 99%: Only the 1% Voted For Austerity — The 99% Should Decide On Austerity — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From Austerity!  Under Austerity, All of the World Will Eventually Be Pauperized, Humbled, and Desecrated Like Greece and Puerto Rico.    Socialism Means True Democracy — The 99% Will Rule! — Not the Few!

Images of the Day:

Signe Wikenson: Political Cartoon: Philadelphia law enforcement working together for a safer city 

Quotes of the Day:

You can’t separate peace from freedom because no one can be at peace, unless he has his freedom.—Malcolm X

Videos of the Day:

The crumbling United States Infrastructure:  Newark’s Water Crisis is One of Thousands That Are Worse Than Flint’s  Newark is the latest community to grab the headlines about the ravages of lead poisoning. Newark, Flint, Baltimore, South Bend, Indiana, across this nation, there are at least 3,000 communities with lead poisoning rates that double Flint’s, that match well beyond Newark’s, but they’re not in the headlines. Each time this comes to our attention, most state governmentsseem to understand that these are public health emergencies. Most of these communities are also ravaged by poverty, and most are communities of color. And as Reuters reported, there are communities like Goat Island, Texas where over 25% of the children had high levels of lead— to Warren, Pennsylvania on the Allegheny River, mostly white working-class community where 35% had levels too high. And in mostly African American communities, that are devastated by abandonment and poverty in cities like Baltimore, Cleveland and Philadelphia, it can be as high as 50% of the people who have been poisoned by lead.

Lula: “US hand” on everything that’s happened in Brazil For former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, events in Brazil since the 2016 coup that deposed President Dilma Rousseff were orchestrated by the US government. “Everything that is happening has the hand of the United States on it…. The US created the Lava Jato investigation to take our oil,” he said, speaking for the first time after Supreme Court (STF) prevented his transfer to a São Paulo prison. Lula’s interview, with veteran journalist Bob Fernandes, aired on TVE, a public television station from Bahia, on Friday, August 16th. The full two hour interview with the Lula can now be seen on YouTube here

Solar Energy Is Renewable, But Is It Environmentally Just (1/2)

The Land Politics of Solar Energy (2/2)

Unreported Deaths, Child Cancer & Radioactive Meat: The Untold Story of Chernobyl

U.S.:

The United States is not a Democracy (A government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly)! Only the 1%, through their ownership of the Republicrats and who profit from war and the war budget, vote for War and the war budget — A policy, which Gore Vidal called a  Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace. — The 99% Should Decide On War — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From War!  Under a Democracy, The 99% would have the right to vote on the policy of Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace! The United States takes from the poor and gives to the Rich!

‘Stop Your Cowardice’: Sanders Calls Out McConnell for Ignoring Protesting Coal Miners and Blocking $15 Minimum Wage“I say to Senator McConnell: Stop worrying about your billionaire friends, they’re doing just fine. Start worrying about the working families of your state and around this country.” By Jake Johnson

New Poll Shows ‘Deep and Boiling Anger’ Towards Political Establishment Still WidespreadMore than half of respondents also said race relations are worsening under Trump and that they feel “anxious and uncertain” because of the economy, f you’re feeling anger the political system being rigged to benefit those at the top, a new poll reveals you’re far from alone.  By Andrea Germanos“Hereby Ordered”: On Trump, Capital, Fascism, and China in a World on FireI am hearing whispers from lefties that “the ruling class is finally done with Trump.” It’s “the China stuff” that’s doing the trick. Sure, the argument goes, the corporate and financial powers that be haven’t been all that happy with Trump’s open white nationalism, racism, narcissism, and sexism. It’s not their style. But they’ve been willing to put up with Trump’s noxious nonsense because he’s rewarded them with plutocratic tax cuts and de-regulation. The presidents’ immigrant-bashing awfulness has kept his “heartland” base loyal to a president who knows (despite all his insanity) which constituency matters most in the American oligarchy: the wealthy Few. By Paul Street
Environment:

Capitalisn and the Climate Crisis— A Crime Against Humanity!:

Jefferson’s words, from the Declaration of Independence, that human rights are unalienable, mean that these rights can never be superseded. At all points of conflict the rights of humanity to survive must supersede the right of the few to make a profit. The right to a safe environment is an unalienable human right!    Since environmental illness and destruction are a global concern, it requires all of humanity to act collectively, in our overall interests for our survival as a species, to correct the problem and to remove the obstacle of capitalism. It requires a society where humanity has social, economic, and political control over the entire environment. Such a society, a socialist society, is needed to ensure that all decisions affecting the environment are under the democratic control of humankind so that the production of goods will be done for the needs and survival of humanity instead of the production and the destruction of humanity and other species for profit.  With common ownership of the means of production, and common control and protection of all property and wealth, science and society will be in harmony with the ecosystem and humanity’s future. — Whither Humanity? The Environmental Crisis of Capitalism

The environmental movement has raised many of these demands. In the past 30 years, many laws have been written incorporating some of these concepts. Yet despite these laws, environmental destruction has been allowed to  proceed because these regulations have always been compromised by the incorporation of the concept of economic feasibility. ‘Economic feasibility’ means that the profitability of an economic enterprise cannot be subordinated to environmental needs. Therefore, environmental and safety laws, under capitalism, have always been a compromise between science and business. In fact, environmental destruction, pestilence, and death are factored into production the same as casualties of war are factored into military battles. The most glaring example is the occupational environment, where workplaces have become “killing fields”. (See my essay The War at the Point of Production: The ‘Killing Fields’ of the United States.) — Whither Humanity? The Environmental Crisis of Capitalism

Trump and the Climate Crisis–a Crime Against HumanityThe President of the United States is a criminal.  I’m not referring to the twenty-odd investigations of him currently underway for violations of the Constitution, obstruction of justice, and collaboration with the Russian election attack, among other misdeeds.  No, I’m referring to his and his administration’s intentional and reckless pursuit of national policies that condemn American and the world’s citizens to environmental destruction and the end of life as we know it. By Mel Gurtov

Pretty Soon They Will Try to Privatise Water and Sunlight!:  Nestlé Plan To Take 1.1m Gallons of Water AaDay From Natural Springs Sparks OutcryOpponents fighting to stop the project say the fragile river cannot sustain such a large draw The crystal blue waters of Ginnie Springs have long been treasured among the string of pearls that line Florida’s picturesque Santa Fe River, a playground for water sports enthusiasts and an ecologically critical haven for the numerous species of turtles that nest on its banks. Soon, however, it is feared there could be substantially less water flowing through, if a plan by the food and beverage giant Nestlé wins approval. By  Richard LuscombeCaptalism Kills!: Fires in the Amazon could be part of a doomsday scenario that sees the rainforest spewing carbon into the atmosphere and speeding up climate change even more

  • The Amazon rainforest provides 20% of the world’s oxygen, but its destruction could cause it to not only stop helping the planet, but start releasing carbon and worsening climate change.
  • In a “dieback” scenario, rising temperatures could dry trees, meaning they absorb less carbon and become more flammable, eventually turning the rainforest into a savannah and releasing billions of tons of stored carbon.
  • Researchers have debated the likelihood of the scenario, but fears have heightened under Brazil’s new president, who has advocated expansion of industry in the region, which involves burning and cutting down trees.
  • A record number of fires have hit the Amazon this year — more than 70,000 — and experts say they are due to human activity.
The Amazon rainforest provides 20% of the world’s oxygen, but its destruction could cause it to not only stop helping the planet, but start releasing carbon and worsening climate change. In a “dieback” scenario, rising temperatures could dry trees, meaning they absorb less carbon and become more flammable, eventually turning the rainforest into a savannah and releasing billions of tons of stored carbon. Researchers have debated the likelihood of the scenario, but fears have heightened under Brazil’s new president, who has advocated expansion of industry in the region, which involves burning and cutting down trees. A record number of fires have hit the Amazon this year — more than 70,000 — and experts say they are due to human activity.

Civil Rights/Black Liberation:

Labor:

Economy:

Shadow Government Statisticss Flash Update No. 5

  • Major Downside Benchmark Revisions Announced for Payroll Employment
  • Payroll Employment Hit by 501,000 (-501,000) Downside Preliminary Benchmark Revision for Year-Ended March 2019
  • Final 2019 Benchmarking Estimate Should Be Even Worse; Publication Due With January 2020 Payrolls
  • Previously Estimated Jobs Gain for Full Year Ended March 2019 Was Reduced by 20% (-20%) from 2.496 Million to 1.995 Million
  • Year-to-Year Payroll Growth Revised from 1.69% to 1.35%, Weakest Since Great Recession
  • Negative Benchmarking Suggested Further FOMC Easing and Weakening GDP in Revision

The Dickensian Tale of the WeWork IPO   The WeWork IPO is hype wrapped in subterfuge. It’s a money-losing commercial real estate company attempting to pass itself off as the Dalai Lama of office space rentals. The company has never made a dime of profits and its losses spiraled to $900 million in the first half of this year.  Here’s a sample of the spin from its IPO prospectus: “We provide our members with flexible access to beautiful spaces, a culture of inclusivity and the energy of an inspired community, all connected by our extensive technology infrastructure. We believe our company has the power to elevate how people work, live and grow.”“We believe that individuals are more productive when they are able to express their full and authentic selves, so we aspire to be as inclusive as possible.” By Pam Martens and Russ Martens

World:

A Marxist History of the Nicaraguan Revolution Stalinism and Castroism made the most strenuous efforts to first limit and then contain the Central American revolution. They attempted to confine each step within the framework of national states imposed by U.S. imperialism. The disarmament of the fighters and the electoral processes were agreed upon by the negotiation committees in which the leadership of the FSLN participated, the leadership of the Salvadoran guerrilla army under the sponsorship of Castro and Soviet diplomacy, and the bourgeois governments of Latin America and the United States.The result is clear: Even after years of heroic combat, during which almost 300,000 fighters died, imperialist “order” prevails in Central America. The extension and triumph of the Central American revolution⁠—and its unity in a federation with Cuba⁠—would have been one of the most terrible blows to U.S. imperialism.Britain: Corbyn’s unity government gambit – victory must come from below With the Brexit countdown ticking, establishment pundits and politicians have been clamouring for ‘moderates’ on all sides of the Commons to put aside their differences and form a government of ‘national unity’ to halt Boris Johnson’s no-deal trainwreck.    But when Jeremy Corbyn came forward with just such a proposal, suddenly the ardent Remainers in Parliament developed cold feet. Corbyn is correct to push for an early end to Johnson’s premiership – and exposing the hypocrisy of right-wing Remainers in the process. But the route to a socialist Labour government cannot run through the backrooms of Westminster.By Joe Attard

Britain: reject class collaboration! Fight for socialism!  There is a lot of chatter these days about cross-party and cross-class alliances. The possibility of a no-deal Brexit has certainly set the tongues wagging, especially amongst middle-class radicals like journalist Paul Mason. By Rob Sewell
We Are All Equal!” Captain Who Saved Refugees Refuses Award From Paris Mayor  Pia Klemp, the former captain of the refugee rescue ship Juventa, who together with her crew saved thousands of refugees in the Mediterranean Sea, is refusing to accept an honorary prize bestowed by the Socialist Party mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo. The 36-year-old from Germany announced her decision in a post on her personal Facebook page on Tuesday. She states: Klemp’s post differentiates between the Paris authorities and the population who support refugees. “Paris, I love you for all of the free people and those in solidarity who live there. People who fight for freedom every day … distributing blankets, friendship and solidarity. I love you for those who share their houses … without worrying about the nationality of people or if they have legal papers or not.”  By Will Morrow

Health, Education, and Wealth:

The government of the United States can pass laws in a few days to spend tens of trillions of dollars for war and the bailout of Wall Street and the bankers. Yet, those who ‘govern’, pass universal healthcare for themselves, but they cannot spend even one trillion dollars for universal health for those who are ‘governed’! This is what is considered, by the powers the to be,  a democracy and part of the democratic way. — Roland Sheppard, Let The People Vote on Healthcare

Daily News Digest August 26, 2019

Daily News Digest August 26, 2019

Daily News Digest Achives

Since World War I, ‘the war to end all wars’, there have been perpetual wars for perpetual peace, this Laura Gray’s cartoon from the front page of The Militant August 18, 1945, under banner headline: “There Is No Peace” Could Still Be Published Today!

During This Economic Crisis, Capitalism’s Three Point Political Program: Austerity, Scapegoat Blacks, Minorities, and ‘Illegal’ Immigrants for Unemployment, and  The Iron Heel.

Democracy?:  As the Capitalist Robber Barons Steal from the 99%: Only the 1% Voted For Austerity — The 99% Should Decide On Austerity — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From Austerity!  Under Austerity, All of the World Will Eventually Be Pauperized, Humbled, and Desecrated Like Greece and Puerto Rico.    Socialism Means True Democracy — The 99% Will Rule! — Not the Few!

Images of the Day:

Bendib: Statue of IHam and RachidaQuotes of the Day:

Bounty Hunters are Licensed to Murder:

Listen, I’m a prison abolitionist. I’d like to see the whole legal system torn down and rebuilt from scratch. But how in hell a group of pissed off bounty hunters and bail bondsmen can kill an innocent man, in what at very best has to be described as a case of mistaken identity, and get away with it, is beyond me. Defense attorneys basically suggested 101 conspiracy theories, effectively planting doubts in the mind of the jury, that William Ellis really was in that car and disappeared somewhere — even though nobody ever saw any such thing happen. The attorneys also suggested that the victims really did have guns and fired them, even though no evidence whatsoever showed such a thing. Their ploy worked — in great part, I believe, because the jurors treated the bail bondsmen and bounty hunters like they would have treated law enforcement officers, giving them respect and deferring to their storyline. — Bounty Hunters Are a Lethal Weapon in a Justice System Corrupted by Money

While it’s true that individual companies may have their businesses disrupted by raids, ICE’s operations benefit employers as a whole. Dramatic workplace roundups help create the situation that UFCW spokesperson Abraham White described after the Mississippi sweeps: “Workers across this country are too scared to stand up for their rights and to report wage theft, dangerous work conditions, and other workplace issues.” White called for “ending this dangerous climate of fear.” Demands to arrest bosses for hiring immigrants without the proper papers will do nothing to combat the fear — especially in the context of union-busting workplace raids. The way working people can overcome fear and win better wages and conditions is, as it’s always been, by organizing and by firmly resisting the political class’s efforts to create divisions through appeals to racism and xenophobia. —ICE Raids Benefit Bosses by Creating Fear in Workers

Destroying Rainforest For Economic Gain is Like Burning A Renaissance Painting to Cook A Meal. — E. O. Wilson

When the Last Tree Is Cut Down, the Last Fish Eaten, and the Last Stream Poisoned, You Will Realize That You Cannot Eat Money — Alanis Obomsawin

Videos of the Day:

Trump’s Concentration Camps for Children  This week, the Trump Administration declared that immigrant children can be detained indefinitely, and in conditions that can be described as concentration camps. We talk to Sasha Abramsky of The NationCorporate Interests Use Voter Purges To Disenfranchise Citizens  The SCOTUS decision in Shelby County v Holder ruled that Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 is unconstitutional. Greg Palast talks about how what followed has been the expansion of the very issue that the VRA was implemented to curb.DNC Rejects Call for a Climate Debate

Bolivian Mine Workers Strike Against one of World’s Largest Mining Corporations

U.S.:

The United States is not a Democracy (A government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly)! Only the 1%, through their ownership of the Republicrats and who profit from war and the war budget, vote for War and the war budget — A policy, which Gore Vidal called a  Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace. — The 99% Should Decide On War — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From War!  Under a Democracy, The 99% would have the right to vote on the policy of Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace! The United States takes from the poor and gives to the Rich!

As Our Infrastructure  Crumbles, Our, Right to Life is Under Attack: Water Rights Group Calls on Newark Officials to Resist Privatization of City’s Water Supply Amid Lead Crisis“While city and state officials must respond to the current crisis with urgency, they must also protect their water system from predatory corporate operators.” Pointing to the public health crisis that ensued in Flint, Michigan after the city turned over control of its water to the state, water rights advocates called on leaders in Newark, New Jersey to retain their authority over the city’s water as they confront their own lead crisis. Reports of lead levels well above the EPA’s safety standard of 15 parts per billion surfaced earlier this month, prompting Newark city officials to distribute bottled water to residents. By Julia Conley

The Not So Democratic Democratic Party: Sanders Campaign Co-Chair Nina Turner Calls for All Democratic Candidates to Unite Against DNC Over #ClimateDebate “If all the Democratic presidential candidates say to the DNC, ‘Let’s have a debate or a forum about climate change’—what are they gonna do, kick out every single one of them?” By Jon Queally

Notes on Inauthenticity in a Creeping Fascist NuthouseThe reigning corporate Democrats would rather lose to the right, even to a proto-fascistic white nationalist and eco-exterminist right, than lose to the left, even to a mildly progressive social democratic and environmentalist left within their own party. How else explain their insistence on promoting the ridiculous, right-wing arch-corporatist, imperialist, and dementia-plagued right-wing gaffe machine Joke Biden in the long march to the 2020 Democratic presidential primaries? By Paul Street

After Handing Rich $1.5 Trillion Tax Cut, Trump Reportedly Considering Slashing Medicare and Social Security as ‘Second-Term Project’“The Trump/GOP tax cuts for the wealthy will add over $1.5 trillion in debt. Now we know how they’ll pay for those tax cuts, by cutting Social Security and Medicare.”  — National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare “Mr. Trump, you are not going to have a second term,” tweeted Sen. Bernie Sanders in response to the president’s reported plan By Jake Johnson

Environment:

‘Our Lungs Are on Fire’: Climate Campaigners Rally at Brazilian Embassies to Protest Destruction of Amazon Rainforest “We need governments around the world to speak up against Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro—and put pressure on him to stop these devastating fires and protect the Amazon.” Climate campaigners demonstrated outside the Brazilian embassies in London, Paris, and Madrid on Friday to protest what they say is the Bolsonaro regime’s role in dozens of fires that have ravaged large swathes of the Amazon rainforest over the past three weeks.  By Jake Johnson 

Capitalists Adding More Fuel to Global Warming:  Warnings of Grave Climate and Human Rights Impact as US Export-Import Bank Approves $5 Billion for Natural Gas Project in Mozambique Environmentalists reacted with outrage after the U.S. Export-Import Bank’s board of directors on Thursday approved $5 billion in funding for a liquefied natural gas plant in Mozambique that could pump an estimated 5.2 million tons of planet-warming carbon dioxide into the atmosphere each year.  Doug Norlen, director of the economic policy program at Friends of the Earth, called EXIM’s decision “irresponsible” and said it “proves the agency can’t be trusted to manage billions of dollars in public funds.” By Jake JohnsonThe Fire This Time!:

In pictures: Wildfires ignite across Indonesia As fires rage in Brazil’s Amazon rainforest, the south-east Asian nation of Indonesia is witnessing a similarly devastating ecological tragedy unfold.  The dry season has arrived in Indonesia – home to some of the world’s oldest tropical forests – bringing with it its worst annual fire season since 2015.  Close to 700 hotspots have been identified in fire-prone regions in Sumatra, Kalimantan and the Riau islands.They are often considered to be the planet’s most bio-diverse places but large swathes are being destroyed in the name of large-scale commercial efforts.

Forests provide food and shelter and are critical to sustaining biodiversity. Millions of hectares have been lost to fire in recent decades, having been cleared by commercial or agricultural interests.Amazon Fires Put the Planet at Risk In Brazil, the Amazon rainforest is now burning at a record rate. The greedy, short-sighted policies of Brazil’s far-right President Jair Bolsonaro are jeopardizing indigenous peoples and countless plants and animals. Indeed, in the midst of a climate emergency, Bolsonaro’s policies to slash environmental protections and develop the Amazon for mining, ranching and farming jeopardize the future of life on Earth as we know it. North America has already lost nearly 300 species to extinction. The toll in the more-diverse tropics like the Amazon is unimaginable.  The Amazon not only harbors much of the Earth’s cultural and biological diversity, it plays a major role in oxygen production, carbon dioxide balance and the water cycle. It is a living library of pharmaceuticals and anthropological treasures. By Tierra CurryScientists Definitively Debunk the Biggest Climate Change Lie European and US scientists have cleared up a point that has been nagging away at climate science for decades: not only is the planet warming faster than at any time in the last 2,000 years, but this unique climate change really does have neither a historic precedent nor a natural cause. Other historic changes – the so-called Medieval Warm Period and then the “Little Ice Age” that marked the 17th to the 19th centuries – were not global. The only period in which the world’s climate has changed, everywhere and at the same time, is right now. By Tim RadfordWeek 135: California Is Driving Trump Crazy on Auto EmissionsPlus, national parks are getting hazy (again), and Trump makes a quixotic bid to buy Greenland. About one month after President Trump took office, the big carmakers sent a letter to then U.S. Environmental Protection Agency administrator Scott Pruitt. It asked the EPA to withdraw President Obama’s fuel efficiency standards, which were set to become stricter in 2022. The letter was extremely dramatic, calling the rule “the single most important decision that EPA has made in recent history” (from the industry’s perspective). By  Brian Palmer

Civil Rights/Black Liberation:

Labor:

ICE Raids Benefit Bosses by Creating Fear in Workers. . . In 2000, an immigration official admitted that the authorities rarely detained undocumented workers “unless the employer turns a worker in, and employers usually do that only to break a union or prevent a strike or that kind of stuff.” Immigration officials are more circumspect now, but there are indications that “that kind of stuff” may still be triggering workplace actions .One of the plants raided on August 7 was a Morton, Mississippi, facility owned by Illinois-based poultry giant Koch Foods Inc. In 2018, Koch Foods had to pay $3.75 million to settle an Equal Employment Opportunity Commission suit over racial and sexual harassment of Latina workers there. . . . By David L. Wilson

Economy:

This Graph, by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Proves that There Has Been No Recovery for the Working Class!: Civilian Labor Force Participation Rate: 63%

What Recovery? Half a Million Workers Just Lost Their Jobs !Shadow Government Statists Daily Update (August 23rd to 26th) – Payroll Employment Growth Hit by Massive Preliminary Downside Benchmark Revision of 501,000 (-501,000) Jobs; Major Implications for FOMC Easing and GDP Revisions (see Flash Update No. 5) / July New-Home Sales Dropped 12.8% (-12.8%) on Top of a Nonsensically Volatile 12.7% Upside Revision to June Activity / This Most Worthless of Initial Headline Housing Series Continued in 2q2019 Contraction and Held Shy by 54.3% (-54.3%) of Every Recovering Its Pre-Great Recession Peak / In Contrast, More-Stable and Much-Higher Quality July Existing-Home Sales Reporting Gained 2.5% in July 2019, Versus a Revised June decline of 1.3% (-1.3%) / July 2019 Single-Unit Building Permits Gained 1.8% in the Month, Declined 3.8% (-3.8%) Year-to-Year, With Revised Second-Quarter Activity Holding Its Fifth Consecutive Quarter-to-Quarter Contraction / July CASS Freight Index™ Formally is “Signaling an Economic Contraction” / July Industrial Production, Manufacturing and Mining Declined on Top of Downside Revisions to Second-Quarter Activity / Annualized Quarterly Contraction in Second-Quarter Production Deepened from 1.2% (-1.2%) to 2.1% (-2.1%), Indicating a More-Intense Recession and Downside Revision to Second-Quarter GDP / Oil and Gas Drilling and Exploration Took a Hit / Capacity Utilization Dropped to a 21-Month Low

Jamie Dimon Is in a Whale of a Mess on the WeWork IPO  The WeWork IPOpreliminary prospectus was filed last week with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the company has been getting savage reviews ever since. WeWork is a commercial real estate company leasing out office space but is attempting to mesmerize the public into believing it is some genius new-age thinker. JPMorgan Securities LLC, a unit of JPMorgan Chase, and Goldman Sachs & Co. are listed as lead underwriters on the IPO. Scott Galloway, a professor at NYU’s Stern School of Business, wrote on his blog that “bankers (JPM and Goldman) stand to register $122 million in fees flinging feces at retail investors….” What has not been crystallized as yet, however, is how Jamie Dimon, Chairman and CEO of the largest bank in the U.S., JPMorgan Chase, sits smack in the middle of this mess. Dimon should definitely have seen this mess coming. Dimon was co-CEO of Salomon Smith Barney when it began its super chummy relationship with Bernie Ebbers of WorldCom, which ended in multi-billion dollar legal settlements by Citigroup, Salomon Smith Barney’s parent, and Ebbers serving a 25-year Federal prison sentence. By Pam Martens and Russ Martens

 World:

 China Announces New Tariffs on $75 Billion Worth of US Imports  “Trade wars do not produce winners. China does not want a trade war, but is not afraid to face one, and will fight it if necessary,” said Chinese Ministry of Commerce spokesman Gao Feng. The Chinese Ministry of Commerce informed that the new tariffs will be applied to more than 5,000 U.S. products in two phases. The first stage would come into effect on September 1 and the second one on December 15. China announced that it will impose additional tariffs worth 75,000 million dollars on imports U.S. products, following the measure recently taken by President Donald Trump against the China’s customs fees.

On political crisis in Moscow The events of the past month in Moscow have led to a political crisis on a national scale. Its distinguishing feature is the inability of the authorities to govern as usual, combining political methods and repression for maintaining stability. The mechanism of maintaining legitimate power through controlled elections with low turnout and the predictable victory of United Russia no longer works. Statement By The Russian Socialist Movement

Despite Massive Police Lockdown, Protesters Vow to Offer ‘Radical Solutions’ to Counter G7 Failures “If they were really interested in building a fairer world, surely the G7 would not need to put the whole region of France into lockdown, with thousands of police and ‘unprecedented’ levels of security.” By Andrea Germanos, Health, Education, and Welfare:

The government of the United States can pass laws in a few days to spend tens of trillions of dollars for war and the bailout of Wall Street and the bankers. Yet, those who ‘govern’, pass universal healthcare for themselves, but they cannot spend even one trillion dollars for universal health for those who are ‘governed’! This is what is considered, by the powers the to be,  a democracy and part of the democratic way. — Roland Sheppard, Let The People Vote on Healthcare

Daily News Digest August 20, 2019

Daily News Digest August 20, 2019

Daily News Digest Achives

Since World War I, ‘the war to end all wars’, there have been perpetual wars for perpetual peace, this Laura Gray’s cartoon from the front page of The Militant August 18, 1945, under banner headline: “There Is No Peace” Could Still Be Published Today!

During This Economic Crisis, Capitalism’s Three Point Political Program: Austerity, Scapegoat Blacks, Minorities, and ‘Illegal’ Immigrants for Unemployment, and  The Iron Heel.

Democracy?:  As the Capitalist Robber Barons Steal from the 99%: Only the 1% Voted For Austerity — The 99% Should Decide On Austerity — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From Austerity!  Under Austerity, All of the World Will Eventually Be Pauperized, Humbled, and Desecrated Like Greece and Puerto Rico.    Socialism Means True Democracy — The 99% Will Rule! — Not the Few!

Images of the Day: 

New Jersey Lifts Prison Ban of ‘The New Jim Crow’ After ACLU Criticism Bendib: “Domestic” TerrorismQuotes of the Day:

A Fraction of the 1% Own and Control The Mass Media:

In 2004, Bagdikian’s revised and expanded book, The New Media Monopoly, shows that only 5 huge corporations — Time Warner, Disney, Murdoch’s News Corporation, Bertelsmann of Germany, and Viacom (formerly CBS) — now control most of the media industry, in the U.S. General Electric’s NBC is a close sixth

In 1983, 50 corporations controlled the vast majority of all news media in the U.S. At the time, Ben Bagdikian was called “alarmist” for pointing this out in his book, The Media Monopoly. In his 4th edition, published in 1992, he wrote ‘in the U.S., fewer than two dozen of these extraordinary creatures own and operate 90% of the mass media’—controlling almost all of America’s newspapers, magazines, TV and radio stations, books, records, movies, videos, wire services and photo agencies. He predicted then that eventually this number would fall to about half a dozen companies. This was greeted with skepticism at the time. When the 6th edition of The Media Monopoly was published in 2000, the number had fallen to six. Since then, there have been more mergers and the scope has expanded to include new media like the Internet market. More than 1 in 4 Internet users in the U.S. now log in with AOL Time-Warner, the world’s largest media corporation. —Media Reform Information Center

Videos of the Day:

Why Corporate Media Doesn’t Talk Honestly About Racism Media conversations about racism are rarely accurate, let alone honest, facilitating the status quo and hindering systemic change. A discussion between Dylan Rodriguez, Eddie Conway, and Jaqueline Luqman

How The Mainstream Media Fuels America’s Income Inequality Machine From medicare for all to neoliberal tax subsidies for major corporations the mainstream media often bolsters the notion that a more fair and equitable society is not possible

 The “Toxic 100” Worst Polluters Michael Ash of PERI discusses the “Toxic 100” index, which ranks the top 100 corporations in the US, including the U.S. government, according to the degree to which they pollute the air, the water, and contribute to greenhouse gases. The index assists in divestment campaigns and in identifying opportunities for green growth

A Lack Of Migrant Labor is Forcing Farmers in the Us To Stop Growing Crops

The Secret History of Koch IndustriesDe-Facto Annexation of Kashmir Means India as a Secular State is Ending

Democracy Now! : The Great Land Robbery: How Federal Policies Dispossessed Black Americans of Millions of Acres Over the 20th century, black people in the U.S. were dispossessed of 12 million acres of land. Half of that loss — 6 million acres — occurred over just two decades, from 1950 to 1969, a period largely associated with the civil rights struggle. This mass land dispossession, which affected 98% of black agricultural land owners, is part of the pattern of institutional racism and discrimination that has contributed to the racial wealth gap in the United States. Many of the driving forces behind this land theft were legal and originated in federal policies, as documented by Vann Newkirk, staff writer at The Atlantic. His latest piece for the magazine is the September cover story: “The Great Land Robbery: The shameful story of how 1 million black families have been ripped from their farms.”

North Korea Suspends Talks With South Korea Because of U.S. Sanctions  While U.S.-North Korea nuclear talks fail to proceed because of a lack of unanimity within the Trump administration, the North suspended peace talks with the South because of the U.S.’s refusal to lift economic sanctions, says Tim Shorrock

U.S.:

The United States is not a Democracy (A government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly)! Only the 1%, through their ownership of the Republicrats and who profit from war and the war budget, vote for War and the war budget — A policy, which Gore Vidal called a  Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace.— The 99% Should Decide On War — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From War!  Under a Democracy, The 99% would have the right to vote on the policy of Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace! The United States takes from the poor and gives to the Rich!

The Priorities of the United States A Comparison Between Military Spending and Spending to Repair The Crumbling Infrastructure:

America’s Defense Budget Is Bigger Than You Think  Each year, Congress approves hundreds of billions of dollars for the US defense budget—but the real number exceeds $1 trillion.   Final tally: $1.2542 trillion So our final annual tally for war, preparations for war, and the impact of war comes to more than $1.25 trillion, more than double the Pentagon’s base budget. If the average taxpayer were aware that this amount was being spent in the name of national defense—with much of it wasted, misguided, or simply counterproductive—it might be far harder for the national-security state to consume ever-growing sums with minimal public pushback. For now, however, the gravy train is running full speed ahead, and its main beneficiaries—Lockheed Martin, Boeing, Northrop Grumman, and their cohort—are laughing all the way to the bank. By William D. Hartung and Mandy SmithbergerThe Nation’s Infrastructure Needs ImprovementAcross the United States, years of neglect (Deferred Maintanecnce)-R.S.) have resulted in crumbling roads, bridges in need of repair, inadequate public transport, outdated school buildings, and other critical infrastructure needs. In its most recent report card on the condition of America’s infrastructure, the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) gave U.S. infrastructure a D+ or “poor” rating. The engineers estimated the cost of bringing America’s infrastructure to a state of good repair (a grade of B) by 2025 at $4.6 trillion, of which only about 55 percent has been committed.[4] Improving roads and bridges alone would require $1.1 trillion more than states, localities, and the federal government have allocated. Schools need another $380 billion beyond what’s been invested. (See Figure 1 and Table 2 in the Appendix.) Other studies have supported and built on the ASCE findings. For instance, America’s drinking water treatment and distribution systems need $473 billion in investments over the next 20 years, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.[5] Over half of America’s public schools need to be repaired, renovated, or modernized, according to a U.S. Department of Education survey.[6] And almost 20 percent of the country’s roads are in poor condition, according to the Federal Highway Administration’s most recent survey.[7Environment

The Isle of White: a Tale of the Have-Lots Versus the Have-Nots  The island of North Haven in the Penobscot Bay, Maine, is an eastern establishment, white-shoe summer-place overlain on a diesel swilling, bottom feeding lobster-industry that supports the year-round residents of this tiny, fractal-shored resort. It is washed by the Gulf Stream and reports the fastest rising ocean temperatures in the Western hemisphere, dramatic sea level rises and a devastated eco-system. Comprehensively cleared of its old-growth hardwood forests in the nineteenth century, its second growth pines are now attacked by bark beetles moving north under the duress of a warming climate. In place of the diseased trees, the severely invasive, non-native Buckthorn is proliferating. Lashed by several hurricanes in the twentieth century, the island now awaits the first of this century’s superstorms. Already, beaches are eroding into the bay at alarming rates. By John Davis

Put an End to the Endless War Inflicted Upon Our National Forests  To facilitate the fabrication of stumps, roads, and erosion in America’s National Forests, now the Trump administration has proposed to alter the USDA Forest Service’s [USFS] implementation of the National Environmental Policy Act [NEPA]. The 1969 NEPA was specifically designed to achieve three main things: 1) require agencies like the Forest Service to use science to take a full and fair hard look at the potential environmental impacts of projects such as timber sales, 2) clearly disclose to the public this scientific information and the reasoning underlying their decisions, and 3) provide a clear legal mechanism for you, me, and all Americans to be meaningfully involved in the decision-making process on our National Forests and other public lands. This power-grab by the Trump administration would trash all three of the NEPA’s fundamental goals. One of the ways they intend to circumvent NEPA and increase logging is by drastically expanding the use of the “Categorical Exclusion [CE]”. By Steven Krichbaum

When we talk about the U.S. as the “world’s policeman,” much of the beat Uncle Sam walks is paved with oil. The Persian Gulf, the Niger River Basin Region of Africa, the Horn of Africa, the South China Sea, Central Asia, Venezuela and Libya are all places of U.S. “national interest” because U.S. policymakers are really interested in preserving the dominant role of hydrocarbons in the global economy. Why else would the U.S. Navy base its Fifth Fleet in Bahrain? Or how about the U.S. base in Djibouti or the increasing tempo of deadly kinetic operations in Somalia? Both have everything to do with the Bab el-Mandeb Strait, strategically located between Djibouti and war-torn Yemen. Along with the Strait of Hormuz and the Suez Canal, it’s one of the Middle East’s three major oil transmission points. — We Can’t Confront Climate Change While Lavishly Funding the Pentagon

Week 134: Trump Will Save Endangered Species Only When It’s Cheap Plus, Bernhardt tries to sink offshore wind, and our first-term president takes credit for building a plastics factory that was announced seven years ago.  Scientists warned us three months ago that as many as one million species could face extinction as a result of human failures like habitat destruction, poaching, and climate change. It was a call to action. A rallying cry for all governments, businesses, and individuals to make a heroic effort to preserve the world’s disappearing biodiversity.   This week, the Trump administration responded . . . by gutting the nation’s most important species protection law. By   Brian Palmer

As Climate Crisis Grows, Temperatures Set Global RecordsCivil Rights/Black Liberation:

To End Private Prisons and Prison Forced Slave Slave Labor or  The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness! — Eliminate the Exception Clause In the 13thAmendment to the Constitution!:

Section 1. Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.

Sanders Unveils Plan to End Cash Bail, Ban Private Prisons, and ‘Fundamentally Transform’ US Criminal Justice System “If we stand together, we can eliminate private prisons and detention centers. No more profiteering from locking people up.” Decrying America’s status as the “world’s leading jailer,” Sen. Bernie Sanders on Sunday released a comprehensive plan to confront the crisis of mass incarceration, end the criminalization of poverty, and dramatically overhaul the U.S. criminal justice system. By Jake Johnson 

Labor:

The Silence of the Oil Workers’ Trade Union Bureaucracy is Deafening — Oil Bosses ‘Arrange’ a Crowd for Trump Rally:  Workers Were Reportedly Ordered Not to Protest or Show Any ‘Resistance’ at Trump Rally in Pennsylvania “Field reports from the Banana Republic of America.” The choice for thousands of union workers at Royal Dutch Shell’s petrochemical plant in Beaver County was clear Tuesday: Either stand in a giant hall waiting for President Donald Trump to speak or take the day off with no pay. “Your attendance is not mandatory,” said the rules that one contractor relayed to employees, summarizing points from a memo that Shell sent to union leaders a day ahead of the visit to the $6 billion construction site. But only those who showed up at 7 am, scanned their ID cards, and prepared to stand for hours—through lunch but without lunch—would be paid.”NO SCAN, NO PAY,” a supervisor for that contractor wrote. By Jake Johnson

Mass layoffs for workers; millions for GM, Ford and Chrysler CEOs Next month, with the expiration of the labor contract for 155,000 US autoworkers at Ford, GM, and Chrysler, auto executives will once again demand that workers sacrifice their own livelihoods for the “good of the company.” Tough economic times are around the corner, the companies will say. The automakers are strapped for cash and need a war chest to confront a turbulent world economy, stiffening global competition, and the disruption caused by driverless cars and electric vehicles. If workers do not want to see more layoffs—like the thousands already fired at GM this year—they had better work longer, harder, and for less money. The United Auto Workers (UAW) —whose executives took kickbacks from the auto companies—will say that workers have no choice but to accept the companies’ demands. But the fact is that every dollar taken from workers through pay cuts goes to pay for stock buybacks, financial speculation and the yachts and mansions of the corporate executives and the billionaire capitalists whose interests they represent.

Economy:

Jeffrey Epstein Learned His Sexual Depravity from Wall Street; Then Took It to the Next Level From 1976 to 1981, Jeffrey Epstein worked for the Wall Street investment bank, Bear Stearns. Epstein was found dead in his jail cell on August 10 while awaiting trial on charges of sex trafficking of underage girls, dozens of whom he allegedly sexually assaulted after grooming them first with “inappropriate touching.” Bear Stearns collapsed in the early days of the 2008 financial crisis and was purchased by JPMorgan Chase. One of the last acts of Bear Stearns’ CEO, Jimmy Cayne, was to make a $2 million payment to a woman who charged that the legendary Chairman of Bear Stearns, Ace Greenberg, had engaged in “inappropriate touching.” The young woman was said to have had a witness to her charges. By Pam Martens and Russ Martens

 World:

Further mass protests in Hong Kong Hundreds of thousands of people took part in a mass rally and march in Hong Kong yesterday in defiance of a police ban and despite driving rain. The protest movement sparked by attempts by the city’s administration to pass legislation allowing extradition to China has now entered its 11th week, with no sign of subsiding. By Peter SymondsIndia, Pakistan exchange artillery-fire, threats over Kashmir Tensions between South Asia’s rival nuclear-armed states have escalated in recent days, with India and Pakistan accusing each other of preparing to attack, and their military forces exchanging lethal artillery fire across the Line of Control (LoC) that separates the Indian and Pakistani-controlled portions of Kashmir. On Saturday, New Delhi said one of its soldiers had been killed in what it called an unprovoked Pakistan-initiated, cross-border artillery exchange. By Keith Jones

 Health, Education, and Welfare:

The government of the United States can pass laws in a few days to spend tens of trillions of dollars for war and the bailout of Wall Street and the bankers. Yet, those who ‘govern’, pass universal healthcare for themselves, but they cannot spend even one trillion dollars for universal health for those who are ‘governed’! This is what is considered, by the powers the to be,  a democracy and part of the democratic way. — Roland Sheppard, Let The People Vote on Healthcare

 Lung Disease Outbreak: First Casualties of the War on Vaping?  On August 15, Wisconsin’s Department of Health Services announced “a cluster of people with severe lung disease who all reported recent vaping or dabbing (vaping marijuana oils, extracts, or concentrates).”  CNN reports more than 120 similar cases nationwide based on a survey of state health departments. By Thomas Knapp

Campaign Renews Demand for Ban on ‘Killer Robots,’ Calls Out US Obstruction Without a binding treaty requiring “meaningful human control over the use of force,” say campaigners, lives could “be taken based on algorithms” By Andrea Germanos

People take part in a demonstration as part of the campaign “Stop Killer Robots” organised by German NGO “Facing Finance” to ban what they call killer robots on March 21, 2019 in front of the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin. The campaign to “Stop Killer Robots” is a global coalition of 82 international and regional NGOs in 35 countries that asks for a ban on lethal fully autonomous weapons. (Photo: Wolfgang Kumm/AFP/Getty Images)

Daily News Digest August 12, 2019

Daily News Digest August 12, 2019

Daily News Digest Achives

Since World War I, ‘the war to end all wars’, there have been perpetual wars for perpetual peace, this Laura Gray’s cartoon from the front page of The Militant August 18, 1945, under banner headline: “There Is No Peace” Could Still Be Published Today!

During This Economic Crisis, Capitalism’s Three Point Political Program: Austerity, Scapegoat Blacks, Minorities, and ‘Illegal’ Immigrants for Unemployment, and  The Iron Heel.

Democracy?:  As the Capitalist Robber Barons Steal from the 99%: Only the 1% Voted For Austerity — The 99% Should Decide On Austerity — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From Austerity!  Under Austerity, All of the World Will Eventually Be Pauperized, Humbled, and Desecrated Like Greece and Puerto Rico.    Socialism Means True Democracy — The 99% Will Rule! — Not the Few!

While in El Pasco, Trump, the Terrorist President, Responded to His Follower’s White Terrorist Shootings,  in El Paso Texas, by Descending Upon and Terrorizing Immigrant Workers and Terrorizing Their Children in Mississippi, who had recently won a workplace battle against sexual harassment, national origin and race discrimination.  From: the August 9 Democracy Now ShowMass ICE Raids in Mississippi After Workers Fought for Better Conditions Leave Kids Without Parents:

Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents swept through seven poultry processing plants in Mississippi this week and arrested 680 people. It was the largest single-state raid in U.S. history. The mass arrests also came on the first day of the school year, and some children walked home from school only to find their doors locked and their family members missing. Wednesday’s raids targeted chicken processing plants operated by Koch Foods, one of the largest poultry producers in the U.S. Last year, the company paid out $3.75 million to settle an Equal Employment Opportunities Commission class-action suit charging the company with sexual harassment, national origin and race discrimination, and retaliation against Latino workers at one of its Mississippi plants. Labor activists say it’s the latest raid to target factories where immigrant workers have organized unions, fought back against discrimination or challenged unsafe and unsanitary conditions.

Images of the Day: 

Linking El Paso Massacre to ICE Raids, Sanders Says Trump’s Campaign of Terror Against Immigrants Must Be DefeatedQuotes of the Day:

Terrible things are happening outside. At any time of night and day, poor helpless people are being dragged out of their homes. They’re allowed to take only a knapsack and a little cash with them, and even then, they’re robbed of these possessions on the way. Families are torn apart; men, women and children are separated. Children come home from school to find that their parents have disappeared. Women return from shopping to find their houses sealed, their families gone. — The Diary of Anne Frank Mortality Quotes

The interlocking institutions work in many ways but one means is the so-called “revolving door.” The merger of finance capital with government has been well documented by Nomi Prins. This CBS News analysis lists the names of Goldman Sachs executives “at the highest reaches of power both in Washington and around the world.” Two recent reports by Public Citizen document the connections between Federal Trade Commission officials and the corporations they are supposed to regulate and the routine transfer of politicians to the front ranks of corporate lobbyists. The same kind of dual office holding is business as usual for the military-industrial complex. ”— Climate Crisis Means the Ruling Class has Failed. Can the Working Class Inherit the Earth?

Politicians have long manipulated public perceptions of immigration, turning immigrants into a scapegoat for issues like unemployment and economic troubles. In recent months, immigrants and refugees have also been tacked with the blame for terrorism by populist leaders like Donald Trump. Immigrants, however, are not to blame for terrorism or a litany of other legitimate grievances. Populists simply use them because they’re an easy target. — It’s not just Trump. Immigrants are the global right’s main scapegoat.

 Videos of the Day:

Democracy Now! Mass ICE Raids in Mississippi After Workers Fought for Better Conditions Leave Kids Without Parents

Death by Police is Now the 6th Leading Cause of Death Among Young Men

Exclusive: Baltimore Cop Convicted of Pulling Gun on Pedestrian He Almost Hit

New IPCC Report Warns of Vicious Cycle Between Soil Degradation and Climate Change

In the Quest for Gaza’s Oil: New Israeli Military Strategies for Annexation and Undermining Palestinian Identity

U.S.:

The United States is not a Democracy (A government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly)! Only the 1%, through their ownership of the Republicrats and who profit from war and the war budget, vote for War and the war budget — A policy, which Gore Vidal called a  Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace.— The 99% Should Decide On War — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From War!  Under a Democracy, The 99% would have the right to vote on the policy of Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace!

‘Progressive’ Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Votes for War Budget!:

Deficit Hawks Are Enabling The Next US War — The U.S. Budget is Rigged To Hold Essential Domestic Programs Hostage o The Pentagon’s War Chest. Back in April, progressives in Congress succeeded in halting a vote that included a military budget increase.  In July, most of those same progressives — including powerhouses like Reps. Barbara Lee and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez — voted to support a military budget that was slightly larger even than what they’d rejected in April. What changed? As Democratic and White House leadership announced a backroom budget compromise and put it up for a vote in July, congressional progressives faced a seemingly impossible choice: They could vote to support new spending on programs that alleviate poverty and create opportunity, but they would also have to support more spending on the U.S. war machine. Or, they could vote against new Pentagon funds and risk massive budget cuts to programs like housing and food assistance, education and job training. By Lindsay KoshgarianChelsea Manning faces $441,000 in fines and another year in jail for refusing to testify against WikiLeaksFederal District Judge Anthony Trenga rejected a motion Monday from imprisoned whistleblower Chelsea Manning to reconsider the imposition of daily fines for her principled refusal to testify before a grand jury impaneled to bring frame-up charges against WikiLeaks founder and publisher Julian Assange. . . . The 31-year-old former Army intelligence analyst is being vindictively pursued by the Trump administration for her role in exposing US war crimes in Afghanistan and Iraq. She leaked to WikiLeaks hundreds of thousands of military war logs, diplomatic cables and the infamous Collateral Murder video, which showed an Apache helicopter airstrike in Baghdad that killed at least a dozen civilians, including two Reuters journalists. By Niles NiemuthEnvironment:

Killing Fields

Best Science That Money Can Buy: Trump’s EPA Kills

Headline: Trump’s EPA defies California rules, says glyphosate in Monsanto’s Roundup is OK

Internal Monsanto records just filed in court show that a corporate intelligence group hired to “to take the temperature on current regulatory attitudes for glyphosate” reported that the White House could be counted on to defend the company’s Roundup herbicides. In a report attached to a July 2018 email to Monsanto global strategy official Todd Rands, the strategic intelligence and advisory firm Hakluyt  reported to Monsanto the following:“A domestic policy adviser at the White House said, for instance: ‘We have Monsanto’s back on pesticides regulation. We are prepared to go toe-to-toe on any disputes. — White House Has “Monsanto’s Back on Pesticides,” Newly Revealed Document Says

Dow Chemical has close ties to the President. Among other things, the company reportedly donated $1 million for Trump’s inauguration and its CEO previously played a chief advisory role to the president, heading up his now defunct “American Manufacturing Council.” — NRDC Sues EPA Over Latest Refusal to Ban Pesticide Toxic to Kids’ Brains

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency must ban chlorpyrifos—a pesticide linked to learning disabilities in children—from food in the U.S., according to litigation filed today in the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals by Earthjustice on behalf of the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and a coalition of labor and health organizations. It is the second lawsuit the groups have filed against EPA over the chemical since the Trump administration refused to take action in 2017. “We will not stand by while the Trump administration fights to keep this poison on the food we feed our kids,” said Miriam Rotkin-Ellman, senior scientist at NRDC. . . .   — NRDC Sues EPA Over Latest Refusal to Ban Pesticide Toxic to Kids’ Brains

“EPA knows this stuff is toxic—its own scientists have been sounding the alarm for years now—but this administration is shameless in its push to keep it on the market. We are urging the court to side with children over a powerful chemical industry with friends in high places. Chlorpyrifos does not belong on our food or in our fields.” — NRDC Sues EPA Over Latest Refusal to Ban Pesticide Toxic to Kids’ Brains

Climate Crisis Means the Ruling Class has Failed. Can the Working Class Inherit the Earth? The climate crisis is proof positive that the ruling class is an utter failure — but it will not fall on its own. Can the working class rise to the challenge? It sure will help if we understand that our class interests are not merely the economic needs of working people — no matter how important that is — but the universal interests of a healthy planet for all the people. Let’s start acting like it.The corporate solutions to the climate crisis must dodge the causes of the crisis. The ruling class uses deception and secrecy to limit public debate. When the facts become obvious and overwhelming corporate politicians simply refuse to debate it. Gag rules are back in fashion. When the people demand a Green New Deal the same politicians water it down and disarm it. By Richard Moser

Civil Rights/Black Liberation:

The first civil and human rights movement by and for Black people started during the Civil War and the period of Black Reconstruction that followed. It was a time of radical hopes for many freed slaves. But it was also a time of betrayal. Then President Andrew Johnson and the non-radical Republicans, in collusion with the Democratic Party, the party of slavery, sold out the early post-war promises for full equality and “40 acres and a mule”. Instead, the promise of equality was soon replaced by the restoration of the property rights of the former slave owners in the South. This was accomplished by the Compromise of 1877   How did they accomplish this betrayal? The answer is simple—terrorism. They used police and terroristic Ku Klux Klan violence. These extra-legal activities laid the basis for the overthrow of Black Reconstruction and the institutionalization of legal segregation (Jim Crow) in the former slave states. To enforce Jim Crow, Black people were, for decades, indiscriminately lynched and framed. — The Rise and Fall of the Civil Rights Movement

Roaming Charges: Small Stains on the Pavement Many of the liberals talking the loudest about “white supremacy” on MSDNC have only known its privileges, thus they would have us believe white supremacy resides only in the vile minds of the KKK and Aryan Nations, instead of the racist forces operating inside the banks, the school boards, the police, the FBI, the Pentagon that degrade, impoverish and kill people every single day. By Jeffrey St. Clair

Mass-Shootings as Expressions of U.S. Racism Nineteenth century U.S. racism, resting in part on biblical myth (the curse of Ham) and Social Darwinist notions of racial hierarchies, focused on the defense of slavery and suppression of uppity blacks. Its cruelest, most terrorist tool was the lynching. Twenty-first century racism rests on the myth of a lost golden era of white (“White”) prosperity and happiness in the Promised Land, a halcyon time gradually stolen by waves of unwelcome unassimilable brown people; it focuses on whites as victims, and the expulsion and exclusion of these others. Its current weapon of choice is the mass-shooting. By Gary Leupp 

 American Exceptionalism = Mass Murder  By Glen Ford, BAR executive editor     U.S. police agencies, including the FBI, are incapable of mounting an effective offensive against their soul mates in the armed white right. “The FBI has always behaved as if armed white supremacists were a potential reserve force to help crush Black rebellions.”    In the Age of Trump, the New York Times and other corporate media have discovered that militant white supremacists are over-represented among the practitioners of the nation’s peculiar pathology: massshootings.                                                              Patrick Crusius, the El Paso gunman who last weekend killed 22 people and injured dozens, mostly Latinos, was apparently a devotee of the French racist writer Renaud Camus, who warned that whites were in danger of being “replaced” by  non-white immigrants.      Before going on his Wal-Mart rampage, Crusius posted online that he was resisting “the Hispanic invasion of Texas.”            The Times notes  that the shooter who killed 51 people at a mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand , last March, left a manifesto with the same title as Camus’ book, The Great Replacement, which is also thought to have inspired the shooter that killed 11 congregants at a Pittsburgh synagogue  in October of last year, as well as the gunman that attacked a synagogue outside San Diego , in April.     According to “replacement theory,” Jews are the orchestrators of non-white people’s incursions on “white” territory. The white supremacists that marched in Charlottesville, Virginia , during the first summer of Trump’s presidency, chanted, “Jews will not replace us!”

Labor:

Government Union Busters:  You Can Bet That the ICE Armed ICE Raiders in Mississippi Did Not Just Target Immigrants, but also, That ICE Targeted Those Workers, That Were Targeted by Their Employers, as the Worker Leaders, Who Were Involved in the Struggles Against Discrimination of the Chicken Factories and the Unionization of Those Plants!

Economy  

#Trillion Swindle: Higher Education Usury

Student Debt Crisis: Today, August 7 2019, The Student Debt Crisis Reached  $1,654,792,448,885!

The Truth About Student Debt: 7 Facts No One Is Talking About  The facts seem stark: About 45 million Americans now owe a stunning $1.6 trillion in student debt. That’s roughly one in every four adults, nearly double the number who had higher education loans 15 years ago. Among millennials, the number is one in three, often cited as a reason why so many young adults can’t afford to buy a home, get married, have a family or move out of their parents’ basements. eanwhile, the average amount that undergraduates borrow has shot up 60 percent over the same period, and defaults on loans have jumped as well. More than one-quarter of students can’t keep up with their payments 12 years after borrowing, vs. 18 percent just a few years ago, and that number is projected to hit 40 percent by 2023. With default can come heartache: It can ruin people’s credit scores, wreck their ability to borrow or rent an apartment and, in some areas, cause their professional licenses to be revoked.   Given all that, it’s not exactly shocking that a lot of people are using the word “crisis” to describe student debt these days. Or that college loans and the pain they can cause have become a hot topic in the 2020 presidential campaign. Nearly every candidate is turning up the hyperbole and offering a proposal for debt relief, from the modest (hello, Kamala Harris, Beto O’Rourke) to the sweeping (nice to see you, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren). By Diane Harris

Malaysia Indicts 17 of the “Untouchables” at Goldman Sachs  When it comes to serial and systemic frauds perpetrated by big banks on Wall Street, the U.S. Department of Justice typically punts. It will either not charge the bank itself or it will issue a felony charge along with a non-prosecution agreement that lets the bank settle the charges without a trial. These tactics by the Justice Department are why Wall Street crimes remain serial and systemic in nature.  This morning, the Attorney General in Malaysia stunned Goldman Sachs with an indictment of 17 of its former and current executives. That came on the heels of criminal charges filed last December by Malaysian authorities in the same matter against three Goldman Sachs subsidiaries and two former Goldman employees, Tim Leissner and Roger Ng. By Pam Martens and Russ Martens

World:

‘Huge Victory for Press Freedom’: Brazil Supreme Court Bars Bolsonaro From Investigating Glenn Greenwald and The Intercept Greenwald, co-founder of The Intercept, applauded the court for protecting journalism against “repressive, retaliatory acts threatened by the Bolsonaro government” By Jake Johnson

 Health, Education, and Welfare:

The government of the United States can pass laws in a few days to spend tens of trillions of dollars for war and the bailout of Wall Street and the bankers. Yet, those who ‘govern’, pass universal healthcare for themselves, but they cannot spend even one trillion dollars for universal health for those who are ‘governed’! This is what is considered, by the powers the to be,  a democracy and part of the democratic way. — Roland Sheppard, Let The People Vote on Healthcare!

Big Pharma: Gouges, Casualties, and the Congressional Remedy! ­The Congress can overturn the abuses of Big Pharma and its “pay or die,” subsidized business model for its drugs. Big Pharma’s trail of greed, power, and cruelty gets worse every year. Its products and practices take hundreds of thousands of lives in the U.S. from over-prescriptions, lethal combinations of prescriptions, ineffective or contaminated drugs, and dangerous side-effects. The biggest drug dealers in the U.S. operate legally. Their names are emblazoned in ads and promotions everywhere. Who hasn’t heard of Eli Lilly, Merck, Pfizer, and Novartis? Big Pharma revenues and profits have skyrocketed. In 2017, the U.S. consumers spent $333.4 billion on prescription drugs. By Ralph Nader

Daily News Digest August 2019

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Daily News Digest Achives

Since World War I, ‘the war to end all wars’, there have been perpetual wars for perpetual peace, this Laura Gray’s cartoon from the front page of The Militant August 18, 1945, under banner headline: “There Is No Peace” Could Still Be Published Today!

During This Economic Crisis, Capitalism’s Three Point Political Program: Austerity, Scapegoat Blacks, Minorities, and ‘Illegal’ Immigrants for Unemployment, and  The Iron Heel.

Democracy?:  As the Capitalist Robber Barons Steal from the 99%: Only the 1% Voted For Austerity — The 99% Should Decide On Austerity — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From Austerity!  Under Austerity, All of the World Will Eventually Be Pauperized, Humbled, and Desecrated Like Greece and Puerto Rico.    Socialism Means True Democracy — The 99% Will Rule! — Not the Few!

Images of the Day: 

U.S. Interest Payments to Equal Social Security Spending by 2048: CBO (But Every Year, Social Security Uses it Trust Funds to Buy US Savings Bonds. So the Principal and the Amount of Interest Due to Social Security Keeps Expanding and So the Debt Owed, in Interest to Social Security Keeps Expanding the Debt Bubble)

What Crisis? It Ain’t Broke, So No Need To Fix It

Quotes of the Day:

Speaking About the New Federal Budget and National Debt Increase.  Almost All Major Newscasters Newspeak That There Is A Social Security Debt Crisis  — Setting The Stage For  Impending Cuts In Social Security Benefits.:

The Myth:   Both of those, Medicare and Social Security, on trend to double or nearly double. And they are already one of the largest spending amounts, Judy. And if you look at this, Medicare, Judy, right now, it is on track to run through its trust fund in seven years.  So, if lawmakers don’t deal with this, benefits will be cut. —  PBS Newhour, The Long-Term Debt Mplications of Senate’s New 2-Year Budget

The Facts:   The bottom line is that Social Security is more financially sound today than it has been throughout most of its 69-year history, according to Social Security trustees’ numbers. If workers in 2050, who will be earning on average 68 percent more in real, inflation-adjusted dollars than they are today, have to pay 1 or 2 percent more of their income in taxes—as they have in the past—they won’t be able to complain much. They will still enjoy higher living standards than we do today. And Social Security will provide much larger real annual benefits for longer retirements when their turn comes. The impending crisis of Social Security is a myth. Without it, however, Bush’s initiative to slash benefits and partially privatize the program wouldn’t have a prayer. — Mark Weisbrot and Dean Baker  What Crisis? It Ain’t Broke, So No Need To Fix It

The Bailing Out of Wall Street: 

The first top-to-bottom audit of the Federal Reserve uncovered eye-popping new details about how the U.S. provided a whopping $16 trillion in secret loans to bail out American and foreign banks and businesses during the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression… The Fed outsourced virtually all of the operations of their emergency lending programs to private contractors like JP Morgan Chase, Morgan Stanley, and Wells Fargo.  The same firms also received trillions of dollars in Fed loans at near-zero interest rates. Altogether some two-thirds of the contracts that the Fed awarded to manage its emergency lending programs were no-bid contracts. Morgan Stanley was given the largest no-bid contract worth $108.4 million to help manage the Fed bailout of AIG. — Bernie Sanders, Bernie, It’s Time to Audit the New York Fed

 Videos of the Day:

Negative Interest, Debt Jubilee?As interest rates head into negative territory and Greek debt yields less than US Treasury debt, DOUBLE DOWN asks economist and historian, Dr. Michael Hudson if any economic theory has ever suggested negative interest rates. Not since back to the Bronze Age does he recall anything like this being suggested. That’s because, for thousands of years, economic beings have chosen to hold debt jubilees. Negative rates achieve that a bit slower but they do the same thing eventually by bringing the volume of savings on the asset side of the balance sheet down to the volume of debt that can be repaid. Hudson believes rates will quickly go as negative as 25% …

Democracy Now!: “You’re Gonna Kill Me”: Bodycam Video Shows Dallas Officers Mocking Man as He Died Pinned to Ground

Why did Tulsi Gabbard Meet with Assad? Let’s Hear it From Her.

U.S.:

The United States is not a Democracy (A government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly)! Only the 1%, through their ownership of the Republicrats and who profit from war and the war budget, vote for War and the war budget — A policy, which Gore Vidal called a  Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace.— The 99% Should Decide On War — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From War!  Under a Democracy, The 99% would have the right to vote on the policy of Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace!

For one, they are driven by sane powerful economic forces, gainfully employed in afflicting a vulnerable population. The rapacious, unregulated capitalism of the kind that now shapes the Trump agenda prepared the ground of the opioid crisis in Appalachia, the Midwest Rust Belt, and elsewhere by engendering the inequalities and hardships that drive so many to despair.— The Opioid and Trump Addictions: Symptoms of the Same Malaise

As the Prisons Grow — From the New Jim Crow to the New Slavery:  America Has Gulags in Its Own Backyard    Plucking chickens for for-profit companies, caring for elderly patients without any training, and other forms of hard, uncompensated labor are sanctioned in the United States as court-mandated rehabilitation for drug-related charges. As the deficit of rehab care in the U.S. grew during the far-reaching opioids crisis over recent years, what are essentially work camps—where detainees work for no money or face prison time, despite often not even being convicted of a crime—started to pop up all over the country.  In a hard-hitting series for Reveal from the Center for Investigative Reporting, investigative journalist Shoshana Walter details the shocking discoveries she and her former Reveal colleague Amy Julia Harris, now at The New York Times, made as they investigated long-term residential treatment programs in which recovering addicts worked for such employers as Exxon, Shell and Walmart—and received no pay. By Robert Scheer‘We Cannot Keep Handing Over Billions to Military-Industrial Complex,’ Says Sanders as Senate Passes Massive Pentagon Budget“The Pentagon is set to grow by $90 billion and reach $738 billion next year. For $90 billion, we could double nutrition assistance or provide $7,000 to every child in poverty.” By Jake Johnson

Those ‘rat infested’ places in Baltimore? They’re owned by Trump’s son-in-law Davon Jones doesn’t have to look far to see the irony in President Donald Trump’s tweets that Baltimore is a “rat and rodent infested mess.” His apartment owned by the president’s son-in-law has been invaded by mice since he moved in a year ago. “I don’t know how they come in,” Jones says. “Every time I catch them, they come right back.” Jared Kushner’s family real estate firm owns thousands of apartments and townhomes in the Baltimore area, and some have been criticized for the same kind of disrepair and neglect that the president has accused local leaders of failing to address. Residents have complained about mold, bedbugs, leaks and, yes, mice — plenty of mice. And they say management appears in no hurry to fix the problems.Environment:

‘We Urgently Need to Change Our Way of Living,’ Experts Warn as Heat Wave Causes Historic Ice Melt in Greenland“More than 12 billion tons of water will have entered the ocean by tonight, permanently raising sea levels.” The heat wave that smashed records in Europe last week has now reached Greenland, where it is causing the world’s second-largest ice sheet to endure one of its most exteme melting events ever documented, leading experts to express fresh concerns about what the global climate crisis will mean for future sea level rise. By Jessica Corbett

According to the U.S. Geological Survey3, if all of the ice caps melted, it is estimated that sea level could rise more than 80 meters or 262 feet. The potential catastrophic results of global warming and the threat to humanity’s future should become an immediate concern.  If thr Greenland Ice sheet melted the sea level would rise 6.55meters or over  21 feet!                                                                                    Table 1. Estimated potential maximum sea-level rise from the total melting of present-day glaciers. Civil Rights/Black Liberation:

Reparations Rising – With Permission from White Democrats  Black people are not obligated to defend opportunists and servants of 
white capital in Baltimore just because they were called out by Trump. By Glen Ford, BAR executive editorFreedom Rider: Trump and Baltimore   
Anyone feeling the need to defend Baltimore from Trump’s opinions ought to talk about what really ails that city. By Margaret Kimberley, BAR editor and senior columnistTrump and Black Misleadership Class: Collaborators in the Defense of White Power Black people are not obligated to defend opportunists and servants of 
white capital in Baltimore just because they were called out by Trump. By Ajamu Baraka, BAR editor and columnist​​​​​​​Russiagate Fanatic Michael Isikoff’s Curious Project Seymour Hersh has been right about some of the biggest stories of our times, and he thinks the DNC email theft was an inside job. By Ann Garrison , BAR contributor Megan Rapinoe: Fake Progressive The con of diversity is all that distinguishes Democratic Party elites and white feminists from the big Orange Menace in the White House. By Danny Haiphong , BAR contributorBad Hombre Defense By Raymond Nat Turner, BAR poet-in-residenceWait!
Call the Cream Team—
Dershbag’s a lawyer,
Slick Willy’s a lawyer—
Wait!
Before you suicide the accused
Serial pedophile predator
who could flip and name names,
Before he has a heart attack, or
viagra overdose                                                                 Before he hangs himself with
dental floss; or a garbage bag
There’s the Bad Hombre Defense:
He’s rich, he can have any woman
he wants! Why would he fool with
teenage trailer trash? Why? Why? . . .

The “Total Anarchy” of Wet Cops No matter how many Black people cops kill and abuse, corporate media amplify voices that shift victimhood onto the police force.By Josmar Trujillo A Legacy of Violence and Land Appropriation Bethesda Moses African Cemetery  Montgomery County officials thought no one would care about a “bunch of dead black folks.” By BAR Editor and Columnist, Dr. Marsha Adebayo and Chris Rigaux

Nancy Pelosi: The leader of the “Hizb al-Shaitan” Pelosi is not transparent like Trump in her cunning moves but, like Trump, is averse to any challenge to the status quo. By B.R. GowaniMarkets and Margins: An interview with Etant Dupain The Haitian market woman has been marginalized by the same forces that oppress and prey on her nation. By The Public Archive 

Chicago Police Compiling Dossiers on People Who Speak at Police Board Meetings Even cops that testify before the board have had their files updated. “’Totally inappropriate,’ said the city’s newly elected Black mayor.” By Monique Judge

Black Agenda Radio for Week of July 29, 2019      Black Agenda Radio on the Progressive Radio Network is hosted by Glen Ford and Nellie Bailey. A new edition of the program airs every Monday at 11:am ET on PRN. Length: one hour.

  • US Was Model for South African Apartheid The US acted as midwife to South Africa’s apartheid system, said  Gerald Horne, author of “US Imperialism and Anti-Communism vs. Liberation of Southern Africa, from Rhodes to Mandela.” Horne, a professor of History and African American Studies at the University of Houston and possibly Black America’s most prolific living political writer, said the US Carnegie Corporation formulated “the blueprint” for South Africa’s apartheid system, imposed in 1948 as “a combination of neo-slavery and Jim Crow on steroids.”
  • Mumia Book Supplants Howard Zinn “Mumia has decided to go to the next level and replace Howard Zinn,” the revered author of “A People’s History of the United States,” said Todd Steven Burroughs, an author and biographer of Mumia Abu Jamal, at a roundtable discussion of Abu Jamal and Stephen Vittoria three-part book, “Murder Incrporated,” at Newark, New Jersey’s Source of Knowledge bookstore. Mumia and VIttoria bring a “decolonized perspective” to US history, said Burroughs. On Prison Radio, Abu Jamal said voters should reject Joe Biden’s presidential candidacy because of his support for the 1990s Crime Bill, a bankruptcy act that enslaved students to college debt, and the Iraq war.
  • Mackler Running Against War “If we’re going to change anything in the word,” said Socialist Action Party presidential candidate Jeff Mackler, “we need to build a massive, united social movement that challenges the inherent prerogatives, interventions and wars of capitalism.”

Labor:

Economy:

Shadow Government Statistics Alternate Unemployment Charts   The seasonally-adjusted SGS Alternate Unemployment Rate reflects current unemployment reporting methodology adjusted for SGS-estimated long-term discouraged workers, who were defined out of official existence in 1994. That estimate is added to the BLS estimate of U-6 unemployment, which includes short-term discouraged workers.  The U-3 unemployment rate   is the monthly headline number. The U-6 unemployment rate is the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS) broadest unemployment measure, including short-term discouraged and other marginally-attached workers as well as those forced to work part-time because they cannot find full-time employment.  The ShadowStats Alternate Unemployment Rate for July 2019 is 21.0%.

Bernie, It’s Time to Audit the New York Fed  On July 21, 2011 the investigative arm of Congress, the Government Accountability Office (GAO), released the first-ever government audit of the Federal Reserve in its 98-year history. The audit came about as a result of the determined efforts of Senator Bernie Sanders to force transparency on the secretive Wall Street bailout actions of the Federal Reserve during the 2008 financial crash and the years that followed. Sanders successfully tacked an amendment on the Dodd-Frank financial reform legislation of 2010 that mandated a top-to-bottom audit of how much the Fed had spent on its bailout and the financial institutions to whom it went. By Pam Martens and Russ MartensWorld:

UN Report on Child Casualties Blacklists only Muslim Perpetrators Secretary General Antionio Guterres presented the report on child casualties in war to the Security Council on Friday. Afghanistan, Syria and Yemen are the areas with the highest numbers of child casualties, followed by Palestine. Nearly all the children killed were Muslim

US Withdraws From 1988 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty  The United States will no longer be prohibited from having ground-launched intermediate-range missiles.   U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced on Friday that the United States has abandoned the 1987 Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) signed with Russia and invites China to be part of “a new era” of arms control. Health, Education, and Welfare:

The government of the United States can pass laws in a few days to spend tens of trillions of dollars for war and the bailout of Wall Street and the bankers. Yet, those who ‘govern’, pass universal healthcare for themselves, but they cannot spend even one trillion dollars for universal health for those who are ‘governed’! This is what is considered, by the powers the to be,  a democracy and part of the democratic way. — Roland Sheppard, Let The People Vote on Healthcare!

Daily News Digest July 18, 2019

Daily News Digest July 18, 2019

Daily News Digest Achives

Since World War I, ‘the war to end all wars’, there have been perpetual wars for perpetual peace, this Laura Gray’s cartoon from the front page of The Militant August 18, 1945, under banner headline: “There Is No Peace” Could Still Be Published Today!During This Economic Crisis, Capitalism’s Three Point Political Program: Austerity, Scapegoat Blacks, Minorities, and ‘Illegal’ Immigrants for Unemployment, and  The Iron Heel.

Democracy?:  As the Capitalist Robber Barons Steal from the 99%: Only the 1% Voted For Austerity — The 99% Should Decide On Austerity — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From Austerity!  Under Austerity, All of the World Will Eventually Be Pauperized, Humbled, and Desecrated Like Greece and Puerto Rico.

Images of the Day:

Bendib: BiPartisn Harmony Against the 99%

Quotes of the Day:

As explored in “PG&E Under Flame,” California’s top utility has invited serious question about the company’s commitment to safety. To recap; state authorities are heavily investigating PG&E’s role in causing the Camp Fire that claimed at least 87 lives in November. Alongside a crisis of reputation, the company is facing billions of dollars in damages.  Amidst this turmoil, PG&E will likely file for bankruptcy in the next two weeks. The utility announced on Monday that they are indeed exploring filing for bankruptcy protection (after much speculation), and their stock quickly tumbled by over 50%. While in the best of cases bankruptcy should be providing protection for as many parties possible, in this case it unfortunately may have the worst impact on the most vulnerable — fire survivors, workers, and in general the 16 million people PG&E serves. Here’s how: 1. Customers and victims of negligence won’t see justice. — If PG&E Goes Bankrupt, Who Benefits? Not Us

Videos of the Day:

Trump’s Racist Rhetoric is Deliberate – Will It Lead Us to Fascism? 

Sudan Transition to Civilian Rule Endangered as Foreign Interests Prevail

Why A 20-Year Old Climate Activist is Suing the Federal Government

U.S.:

The United States is not a Democracy (A government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly)! Only the 1%, through their ownership of the Republicrats and who profit from war and the war budget, vote for War and the war budget — A policy, which Gore Vidal called a  Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace.— The 99% Should Decide On War — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From War!  Under a Democracy, The 99% would have the right to vote on the policy of Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace!

Latin Americans No Longer Allowed: Trump Abolishes Right To Asylum On Us Southern Border The Trump administration is today implementing an “interim final rule” drafted by the US Justice and Homeland Security Departments that will effectively seal the US southern border to men, women and children seeking asylum from violence and repression in Central America and beyond. In yet another assertion of untrammeled executive power, Trump’s asylum decree rides roughshod over both US and international law. The interim rule orders US border officials to summarily deny asylum to anyone who “enters or attempts to enter the United States across the southern border after failing to apply for protection in a third country outside the alien’s country of citizenship, nationality, or last lawful habitual residence through which the alien transited en route to the United States.” By Bill Van AukenAs US Modernizes Its Nuclear Arsenal, Costs and Risks Soar  Trump’s $2 trillion makeover for the U.S.’s nuclear arsenal is certain to trigger a deadly new arms race. On July 16, 1945, the U.S. detonated the first-ever nuclear device in the New Mexico desert. Less than a month later, it dropped two more atomic bombs, destroying Hiroshima and Nagasaki, killing and injuring more than 200,000 civilians. Today, 74 years later, President Donald Trump has elbowed his way to the precipice of war threatening fire, fury and obliteration against one state that has nuclear weapons (North Korea) and one that doesn’t (Iran). In June, shortly after Trump reportedly called off a military strike against Iran with just 10 minutes to spare, he lashed out on Twitter: “Iran cannot have Nuclear Weapons!” By Jon LetmanEnvironment:

PG&E Robber Baron Redux

California 99% Taxpayers to Pay For PG&E’s Deferred Maintenance (The 1% Don’t Pay Taxes.):

  • Report: PG&E ignored repairs on aging power lines Pacific Gas & Electric, which is blamed for some of California’s deadliest recent fires, knew for years that dozens of its aging power lines posed a wildfire threat but avoided replacing or repairing them, it was reported Wednesday. The Wall Street Journal, using company documents obtained under the federal Freedom of Information Act, reported that the utility told the U.S. Forest Service in 2017 and 2018 that 49 aging steel towers on one transmission line needed replacement and another 57 needed replacement of their hardware and aluminum lines. The Journal previously reported that PG&E delayed safety work on the line, known as the Caribou-Palermo line, for five years.
  • California Assembly Passes $21B Wildfire Fund for Utilities Gov. Newsom promises to sign bill meant to save the state’s other big utilities from following PG&E into bankruptcy, and to impose a new fire safety regime.
  • PG&E says power line inspections revealed 10,000 problems — some in need of immediate repair All of the work is included in a recent fire-prevention plan PG&E — like other investor-owned electric companies — was required to submit to state utility regulators. They signed off on PG&E’s plan in May, and U.S. District Judge William Alsup made PG&E’s compliance with the document part of the terms of its probation arising from the 2010 San Bruno pipeline explosion.

Environmental Racism:

Fighting To Survive In Louisiana’s Death Alley

More News From Louisiana’s Cancer Alley: What Is Happening In America’s Cancertown Is Tragic, Immoral And Evil “Woe to those who make unjust laws, to those who issue oppressive decrees, to deprive the poor of their rights and withhold justice from the oppressed of my people” (Isaiah 10:1). I was reminded of this verse from the Bible when I read about the town of Reserve in Louisiana. It is the place in America with the highest risk of cancer due to air toxicity, caused by a raft of government and corporate failure that has deprived residents – many of whom are poor and black – of their right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Reserve is home to the Pontchartrain Works facility, the only chemical plant in America to produce chloroprene, a likely carcinogen, that has spewed from the plant for almost 50 years. US government science has indicated this makes the risk of cancer in that area 50 times higher than the national average. What is happening in Reserve, the subject of a year-long Guardian series, is ugly. It is tragic. It is immoral. And it is evil. By Reverend William Barber

Civil Rights/Black Liberation:

Freedom Rider: The Trump and Pelosi Lovefest  Trump and Pelosi are birds of a feather when it comes to beating up on dissident women of color. “Pelosi probably rose in Trump’s estimation when she dismissed her brown skinned caucus members.” In 2007 this columnist declared that Nancy Pelosi is our enemy. She was the new Speaker of the House after Democrats emerged victorious in the 2006 elections. But they didn’t oppose George W. Bush and the Republicans the way their voters wanted them to. Little has changed since that time. Democrats mobilize in order to defeat the Republicans but still end up with snake in the grass leadership like Pelosi. By Margaret Kimberley , BAR editor and senior columnistFive Myths of American Exceptionalism Killing the Left Part 1.  Adherence to American exceptionalism kills the left and then takes it to the Democratic Party-run graveyard for burial. “The anti-Russian campaign has given the FBI and the CIA a public relations facelift.” American exceptionalism is not merely an ideology that presumes the United States to be the beacon of (white) civilization, progress, and humanity. While this is the overarching definition, its function and form are not always visibly draped in the symbolism of American racist folklore so deeply embedded in the cultural life of the Empire. In my co-authored book American Exceptionalism and American Innocence: A People’s History of Fake News-From the Revolutionary War to the War on Terror, the myths of American exceptionalism are debunked, critiqued, and revised from an anti-imperialist perspective. However, a major focus of the critique is the devastating impact of innocence and exceptionalism on the left in the United States. Here are five myths of American exceptionalism subtly killing the left. By Danny Haiphong , BAR contributorGang of Four   By Raymond Nat Turner , BAR poet-in-residence                                                                        I say, YAY,  I say, MORE, I say, GO, Gang of Four! Rock that boat on the Democratic Party Plantation— every “State of the Union,” hearing and “investigation”  Joust with the stupid, ugly, ignorant corporate clown fancying his weird, absurd, porcupine rug as a crown But he’s mere misdirection—though lewd and loud for ol’ Pentagon pickpockets working the crowd—
Bombing babies, locking little children in cages—
part of their daily war crimes and weekly outrages! (More)

There’s No Such Thing as a “Progressive Prosecutor” in a System Designed to Criminalize Blackness  Incremental changes are treated as if they are touchdowns when they are just moving the chains. “We must be wary of a Democratic party trying to co-opt the left political messaging to placate radical demands of transformation.” When reminiscing on her reign as California’s District Attorney and Attorney General, presidential candidate Kamala Harris referred to herself as a “progressive prosecutor” in her memoir The Truths We Hold: An American Journey. Though this falls in line with the blatant attempt by Harris and her team to rebrand her career in a Democratic presidential primary field that is shifting evermore leftward, review of her case records paints a very different picture. By Gyasi LakeWhy Are So Many Black Families Losing Their Land?  The Reels brothers spent eight years in jail for refusing to leave their plot of land in North Carolina. “Since 1910, black families have been stripped of hundreds of billions of dollars because of lost land.” In the Spring of 2011, the brothers Melvin Davis and Licurtis Reels were the talk of Carteret County, on the central coast of North Carolina. Some people said that the brothers were righteous; others thought that they had lost their minds. That March, Melvin and Licurtis stood in court and refused to leave the land that they had lived on all their lives, a portion of which had, without their knowledge or consent, been sold to developers years before. The brothers were among dozens of Reels family members who considered the land theirs, but Melvin and Licurtis had a particular stake in it. Melvin, who was 64, with loose black curls combed into a ponytail, ran a club there and lived in an apartment above it. He’d established a career shrimping in the river that bordered the land, and his sense of self was tied to the water. Licurtis, who was 53, had spent years building a house near the river’s edge, just steps from his mother’s. By Lizzie Presser

Mansions on land once owned by Freeman’s family.

 Detroit Targeted for Massive Facial Surveillance  A Black elected police commissioner was manhandled at a public meeting for protesting a draconian facial recognition scheme. “Across the globe, from Ferguson to China, these technologies are being used to target activists.” The Detroit Police Department and the Mayor have given us the strongest reason yet to call a halt to the use of facial recognition technologies and Project Green Light .  Mayor Duggan and Chief Craig have asked us to have faith in their judgment, but they cannot even tolerate criticism from an elected Police Commissioner. They condone pushing him to the floor, handcuffing him, and hauling him off to jail because he made forceful comments during a routine Commission meeting.  They cannot handle public criticism without resorting to force and violence. Yet they are asking us to “trust them” with some of the most intrusive and dangerous technology now available. By Shea HowellBernie Sanders’ Present Fight against Corporate Rule vs. the Bernie of 1989  Sanders used to preach that “we can’t tail after the Democrats,” but now he’s selling the pipedream of reforming the Democratic Party. “The Bernie Sanders campaign seeks to corral socialist sentiment inside the corporate Democrat Party just as the Trump campaign seeks to corral fascist sentiment inside the corporate Republican Party.” Recently, former leader of the self-destructed faux left group, the International Socialist Organization, Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor , was giddy hailing Bernie Sanders and his reform-the-Democratic-Party bandwagon. She alleges “Sanders linked the possibility of ending capitalist oligarchy to a “political revolution” that calls on the many to stand up to the few.” She claims Sanders calls for “a complete transformation of the country.” “He named capitalism as the culprit and democratic socialism as a solution.”  “What a breathtaking turn of events” she adds. By Stansfield SmithThe U.S. Economy Still Puts Blacks at the Bottom of the Barrel  If this is a thriving economy, then the next crash is going to obliterate Black people, entirely.  “For nearly every indicator, blacks cluster near or at the bottom – history endlessly repeating itself.” Trump’s rise in the polls is said to be due to a thriving economy, with stocks soaring and official unemployment at a 50-year low.  Trump claims blacks also fared very well. Republican and Democratic politicians, including Barack Obama, like to say that a “rising tide lifts all boats” – even the Black dinghies. So Trump is blowing the same horn. By  Ken MorganIsrael’s Indispensable Service to Oil Thieves and Empire  Israel began as a European colony and has remained interlocked with imperial power, unfailingly serving as the West’s beachhead in the Middle East. “Israel’s role would be to suppress pan-Arab nationalist movements that preached ‘Arab oil for the Arabs’ in defiance of Western ‘interests,’” — Israel, A Beachhead in The Middle East: From European Colony to US Power Projection Platform By Bruce KatzToo Many Africans?  To address “overpopulation,” the richer countries must do two things – consume less and stop stealing Africa’s resources.“Africa does not have anything like the overpopulation problem that England has.” “What are all these famines in Ethiopia ? What are they about? They’re about too many people for too little land. That’s what it’s about.”– Sir David Attenborough [1]The cry that the world is overpopulated is more than two hundred years old, from a period when perhaps a billion people stood on the planet. There are now nearly eight times as many and it’s become normal to blame them – us – for the ills which beset “nature.” There are just too many of us, and we’re using up too many of the world’s resources. But how true is this really? And, what should be done about it? By Stephen Corry Africans Solving African Problems: Bringing Peace to Sudan  The road to peace in the Horn of Africa once again ran through Eritrea, the socialist country the West loves to hate.  “Credit must be given to those who deserve it, the leadership of Eritrea.” he recent peace deal being implemented in Sudan was brokered by African leaders without any interference or even input by non African players ie the UN or western countries. As a matter of fact the deal was made in Asmara, Eritrea where the head of the Sudanese military that had overthrown the long time despot Omar Al Bashir sat down for two days with Eritrean mediators, agreed to the deal, flew back to Khartoum and announced the deal a few hours later. By Thomas C. Mountain

Black Agenda Radio for Week of July 15, 2019 Black Agenda Radio on the Progressive Radio Network is hosted by Glen Ford and Nellie Bailey. A new edition of the program airs every Monday at 11:am ET on PRN. Length: one hour.

  • Voices for Black Reparations – Then and Now  Democrats may have recently “discovered” reparations, but Black activists held a World Tribunal on Reparations in 1982, in New York City. Speakers include Afeni Shakur, the former Black Panther and mother of Hip Hop legend Tupac Shakur. African People’s Socialist Party chairman Omali Yeshitelaputs the reparations struggle in historical perspective.
  • Russia-China Alliance Sets Stage for Global “Great Leap Forward”  US aggressions pushed Russia and China into an ever-deepening alliance that is now changing the direction of global trade and development, according to Anthony Monteiro, the Philadelphia-based Duboisian scholar. The US intelligencia, said Monteiro, is “incapable of looking at the world and finding solutions that will allow humanity to take a great leap forward.”
    Janet and Janine Africa “Free at Last”
  • New York City is preparing a “Free At Last” celebration for MOVe organization survivors Janet and Janine Africa, who were recently released on parole after 41 years in prison. Political prisoner Mumia Abu Jamal is sponsoring the event at the People’s Forum on Friday, July 19, said Gwen DeBrow, of the Campaign to Bring Mumia Home.
  • Defend the Venezuelan Embssay Protectors The four US activists arrested for defending the Venezuelan embassy from supporters of Donald Trump’s hand-picked puppets face up to a year in prison and a $100,000 fine. Glen Fordhas this commentary.

Labor:

Economy:

Senator Compares Facebook’s Libra Association to Spectre in James Bond Movie  Yesterday the U.S. Senate Banking Committee assembled to hear Facebook’s David Marcus explain how the company wants to create a global digital currency called Libra, to be run by a Switzerland-based global organization called the Libra Association, made up of 27 members from the fields of payment systems, technology, telecommunications, blockchain services, venture capital, nonprofits and academic institutions. Given Facebook’s serial history of abusing the privacy rights of its users and selling their data without their permission, not to mention its role in facilitating Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, we immediately went to check out the names of the nonprofits that had signed up to monitor this sprawling international monetary system cooked up in a Facebook lab in a year’s time.  By Pam Martens and Russ MartensWorld:

 Britain: BBC’s Panorama hatchet job – stop the smears! Oppose the anti-Corbyn conspiracy! “Labour was on the brink of civil war last night as Brexit and anti-Semitism threatened to split the party,” bellowed the Tory Daily Mail last week. “Jeremy Corbyn has been rocked by fierce and high-level infighting on both issues ahead of a nightmare week.” Such hysteria has been widespread across the Tory media. It is echoed constantly by Labour’s right wing. It constitutes a deliberate campaign to ramp up a ‘coup’ against Jeremy Corbyn. What is driving this hysteria? They are alarmed that if Boris becomes Tory leader, Corbyn could win a general election. Everything is therefore being done by the capitalist establishment – including their stooges in the Parliamentary Labour Party (PLP) – to discredit Corbyn. By Socialist Appeal (Britain)

 Health, Education, and Welfare:

The government of the United States can pass laws in a few days to spend tens of trillions of dollars for war and the bailout of Wall Street and the bankers. Yet, those who ‘govern’, pass universal healthcare for themselves, but they cannot spend even one trillion dollars for universal health for those who are ‘governed’! This is what is considered, by the powers the to be,  a democracy and part of the democratic way. — Roland Sheppard, Let The People Vote on Healthcare!

Jazz Pharmaceuticals: how to make billions off the sick  The pharmaceutical industry is a very profitable business, particularly if you lack a moral compass. Jazz Pharmaceuticals 15-folded its value in seven years on the back of one drug, for which it charged through the roof. There is a type of drug that is known in EU and US law as an “orphan drug”. This is a drug developed specifically for a rare condition or disease. If a drug is approved for orphan status, the pharmaceutical company that submitted the application is granted a period of exclusivity on the drug. In the EU, that period is 10 years and in the US it’s seven years. This is regardless of whether this drug has any patent rights associated with it.  By Niklas Albin Svensson

Daily News Digest July 11, 2019

Daily News Digest July 11, 2019

Daily News Digest Achives

The Epoch of Imperialist Decay: Both Clinton and Trump Flew on the Epstein’s Lolita Express                (I wonder if they got frequent flier miles?)

Jeffrey Epstein’s Rolodex: A Guide to His Famous Friends and Acquaintances (Video)

Jeffrey Epstein connected to Trump and ClintonFrom Jeffrey Epstein’s Rolodex: A Guide to His Famous Friends and Acquaintances: In this week’s statement, Clinton said he knew nothing of Epstein’s “terrible crimes” and that the two hadn’t spoken in a decade. But the picture of their relationship painted by the former president doesn’t square with flight logs that put Clinton on Epstein’s jet, dubbed the “Lolita Express,” 26 times between 2001 and 2003. Or with Gawker’s 2015 report on Epstein’s little black book, which included “21 contact numbers and various email addresses for Clinton.” Alleged Epstein victim Virginia Giuffre also claimed in a 2015 affidavit that Clinton visited the financier’s private island, though Clinton denies it. The claim has never been corroborated, and there are no Epstein-related allegations of sexual misconduct involving Clinton. Trump’s comment about Epstein’s taste in women has gotten a lot of attention in the past few days for obvious reasons. But it’s not the only thing connecting the two men. Epstein and Trump lived near each other in Palm Beach, ran in the same social circles, and records show Trump flew on the “Lolita Express.” Four years ago, Giuffre alleged that while working as a towel girl at Mar-a-Lago, she was recruited by Epstein’s longtime friend Ghislaine Maxwell to become one of his sex slaves. The year was 1999, and Giuffre was 16 years old. In court documents, Bradley Edwards, an attorney who represented several of Epstein’s alleged victims, said Epstein was banned from Mar-a-Lago because he “sexually assaulted an underage girl at the club.” The claim has not been confirmed.

Since World War I, ‘the war to end all wars’, there have been perpetual wars for perpetual peace, this Laura Gray’s cartoon from the front page of The Militant August 18, 1945, under banner headline: “There Is No Peace” Could Still Be Published Today!During This Economic Crisis, Capitalism’s Three Point Political Program: Austerity, Scapegoat Blacks, Minorities, and ‘Illegal’ Immigrants for Unemployment, and  The Iron Heel.

Democracy?:  As the Capitalist Robber Barons Steal from the 99%: Only the 1% Voted For Austerity — The 99% Should Decide On Austerity — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From Austerity!  Under Austerity, All of the World Will Eventually Be Pauperized, Humbled, and Desecrated Like Greece and Puerto Rico.

Images of the Day:

PG&E Robber Baron Redux

PG&E admits its equipment likely sparked California’s most destructive wildfireQuotes of the Day:

Epstein, a billionaire financier, was arrested in New Jersey last Saturday on charges of running a sex trafficking ring that involved luring underage girls to his New York and Florida residences, and taking them on global flights on his airplane, dubbed the “Lolita Express.” Epstein was first accused of abusing underage girls, some of them as young as 14, more than a decade ago, and he evaded prosecution potentially due to his high-profile connections.   A key challenge investigators faced when first targeting Epstein in the mid-2000s was an inability to obtain evidence through subpoena. A 2005 search of Epstein’s Palm Beach home came up empty in its quest for computers that investigators suspected contained critical evidence connected to his alleged sexual abuse of young girls.   In 2007, a federal grand jury subpoenaed the computers. That August, Acosta, who is now Donald Trump’s labor secretary, entered into plea agreement discussions with Epstein. Because of those talks, a motion to compel production of Epstein’s computers was delayed, according to the Miami Herald. Epstein held out, however, resisting the deal because it would require him to register as a sex offender. The FBI continued investigating and in March 2008, according to the Miami Herald, preparations were being made to take the case to a new federal grand jury.   That would prove unnecessary, as Epstein agreed to a deal with Acosta. Without notifying the 32 identified victims, the federal government reached a non-prosecution agreement with Epstein in exchange for his guilty plea in state court to a minor offense. He pleaded guilty on June 30. — Jeffrey Epstein Shipped Himself A 53-Pound Shredder And A Carpet And Tile Extractor, Maritime Records Show

The request draw a sharp rebuke from Gov. Gavin Newsom’s press secretary Nathan Click late Monday: “While California is working hard to reduce wildfire risk and create a sustainable energy future, PG&E is requesting massive increases in costs to ratepayers in order generate profits for investors – all while wildfire victims sit in bankruptcy. The governor strongly believes ratepayers shouldn’t be on the hook for unnecessary increases as the state’s process plays out.”Along with an earlier rate increase proposed in December, PG&E’s new request would increase average household bills by $22.67 a month for electricity and natural gas, beginning in January 2020. —Gavin Newsom blasts PG&E’s request to raise rates and profits as debate over wildfire costs rages

Videos of the Day:

US Women’s Soccer Team Stands for Equal Pay and Confronting Trump 

Honduras Now Ruled By A “Criminal Gang” – With Western Government Support

Poll: Religion in Decline in Arab Countries, Anger at the U.S Growing

The Pentagon’s Carbon Boot PrintTwo new studies show that the U.S. military consumes more fossil fuels—and emits more greenhouse gases—than many countries

Left Forum 2019, The End of the “End of History”Left Forum 2019, The End of the “End of History”: The Left Alternative to Conservative Liberalism. The Failure of Fukuyama’s Forecast, Dr. David Harvey, Dr. Michael Hudson, Dr. David M. Kotz, Dr. Alexander Buzgalin, LIU Brooklyn, 6-29-2019, New York City, New York, Sponser: Center for Modern Marxist Studies, Lomonosov Moscow State University, Moscow, Russia

The Epoch of Imperialist Decay:

Jeffrey Epstein connected to Trump and Clinton

Jeffrey Epstein’s Rolodex: A Guide to His Famous Friends and Acquaintances

Both Clinton and Trump Flew on the  Epstein’s Lolita Express (I wonder if they got frequent flier miles?)

From Jeffrey Epstein’s Rolodex: A Guide to His Famous Friends and Acquaintances: In this week’s statement, Clinton said he knew nothing of Epstein’s “terrible crimes” and that the two hadn’t spoken in a decade. But the picture of their relationship painted by the former president doesn’t square with flight logs that put Clinton on Epstein’s jet, dubbed the “Lolita Express,” 26 times between 2001 and 2003. Or with Gawker’s 2015 report on Epstein’s little black book, which included “21 contact numbers and various email addresses for Clinton.” Alleged Epstein victim Virginia Giuffre also claimed in a 2015 affidavit that Clinton visited the financier’s private island, though Clinton denies it. The claim has never been corroborated, and there are no Epstein-related allegations of sexual misconduct involving Clinton.  Trump’s comment about Epstein’s taste in women has gotten a lot of attention in the past few days for obvious reasons. But it’s not the only thing connecting the two men. Epstein and Trump lived near each other in Palm Beach, ran in the same social circles, and records show Trump flew on the “Lolita Express.” Four years ago, Giuffre alleged that while working as a towel girl at Mar-a-Lago, she was recruited by Epstein’s longtime friend Ghislaine Maxwell to become one of his sex slaves. The year was 1999, and Giuffre was 16 years old. In court documents, Bradley Edwards, an attorney who represented several of Epstein’s alleged victims, said Epstein was banned from Mar-a-Lago because he “sexually assaulted an underage girl at the club.” The claim has not been confirmed.

U.S.:

The United States is not a Democracy (A government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly)! Only the 1%, through their ownership of the Republicrats and who profit from war and the war budget, vote for War and the war budget — A policy, which Gore Vidal called a  Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace.— The 99% Should Decide On War — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From War!  Under a Democracy, The 99% would have the right to vote on the policy of Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace!

Lies About Iran Killing US Troops in Iraq Are a Ploy to Justify WarOne of the many myths that have been used to justify the push for war with Iran led by National Security Adviser John Bolton and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is that Tehran is responsible for the killing of more than 600 U.S. troops during the Iraq War. By Gareth Porter,Abusing Those Who Served— Veterans Affairs Police Are Supposed to “Protect Those Who Served.” They Have a Shocking Record of Brutality and Impunity.  Derrick Hathaway SERVED multiple tours in Kosovo, contributing to a NATO peacekeeping mission aimed at preventing ethnic cleansing. While Hathaway envisioned his Marine mission as a humanitarian one, he soon became ashamed of his work. In the course of mapping safe routes for NATO forces, Hathaway’s platoon would perform no-knock home raids to search for weapons or contraband, leading to tense confrontations with frightened families. “It was martial law,” Hathaway said. “That left a nasty taste in my mouth. All we were doing was feeding a new form of hate.” By Jasper Craven

CIA Torture Unredacted: Four-Year Investigation Reveals What Was Hidden in US Senate Torture ReportNew report is the most comprehensive public account of one of the most disturbing elements of America’s so-called ‘War on Terror’One night in October 2001, shortly after al-Qaeda’s attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon, a private jet touched down in Karachi. Masood Anwar, a prominent Pakistani journalist, received an unexpected tip from a friend in the airport: “There were men in masks. They took a hooded man onboard in the early hours. Someone videotaped the entire thing. No one was allowed near the site.” Anwar’s story, although no one knew it at the time, would be the start of a thread which led to the heart of the Central Intelligence Agency’s most secret “War on Terror” operation: the “rendition, detention, interrogation” (RDI) programme, a nine-year covert effort which had scores of prisoners flown around the globe to be tortured in undisclosed sites.  By Crofton Black

Environment:

‘Completely Terrifying’: Study Warns Carbon-Saturated Oceans Headed Toward Tipping Point That Could Unleash Mass Extinction Event “Once we’re over the threshold…you’re dealing with how the Earth works, and it goes on its own ride.” The continuous accumulation of carbon dioxide in the planet’s oceans—which shows no sign of stopping due to humanity’s relentless consumption of fossil fuels—is likely to trigger a chemical reaction in Earth’s carbon cycle similar to those which happened just before mass extinction events, according to a new study.By Julia Conley‘Bomb Trains,’ a New Book on the Deadly, Ongoing Threat of Oil by RailOn July 6, 2013, a train hauling crude oil from North Dakota’s Bakken region derailed in Lac-Mégantic, Quebec, resulting in fires and explosions that killed 47 people and wiped out a large part of the small Canadian town’s center. At the time I was living in Albany, New York, which had become a major distribution point for Bakken oil delivered to the Port of Albany in mile-long trains like the one that devastated Lac-Mégantic. In the six months following the deadly disaster, several more trains of Bakken oil derailed and exploded across North America. As the risk of these oil trains became very apparent, I began investigating how the trains could be allowed to travel through communities like mine in Albany and started publishing my findings here at DeSmog. Now, just after the six year anniversary of the Lac-Mégantic disaster, I have compiled all of that research into the new book Bomb Trains: How Industry Greed and Regulatory Failure Put the Public at Risk. By Justin MikulkaIgnorance Is Strength”:                                               Trump’s USDA Suspends Honeybee SurveyThe U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) annual honeybee count has fallen victim to budget cuts, CNN reported Saturday. The suspension of the Honey Bee Colonies report is at least the third bee-related data set to be halted or reduced under the Trump administration, and comes three weeks after Trump’s U.S. Environmental Protection Agency approved the emergency use of bee-killing pesticide sulfoxaflor on 13.9 million acres. It also comes as the population of bees, which help pollinate a third of edible crops, has been declining since 2006. By Olivia RosaneCompliance With Mandated Testing for Lead in Drinking Water in School Districts in New Jersey —  Abstract:  Preventing lead exposure from all sources is critical for children’s optimal health and development. The crisis in Flint, Michigan, drew attention to the role of drinking water in lead exposure. School drinking water might pose significant risks due to aging infrastructure and the particular conditions of water use in schools. In 2016, New Jersey mandated that school districts test all drinking water outlets for lead and specified procedures that districts must follow. This study assessed compliance with this mandate. Districts were required to report results on their websites, so we used district websites as the unit of analysis to assess compliance with testing and reporting procedures and to identify schools that had reported maximum concentrations of lead in water. Most districts complied with the mandate to test their drinking water (90%) and the majority complied with online reporting requirements to some extent (87%). Most districts (79%) had one or more outlets in their district that exceeded the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s action level of 15 ppb. Mandated testing for lead in drinking water in schools is an important policy that can prevent childhood lead exposure. New Jersey should consider lowering the action level at which lead in drinking water should be remediated.

Civil Rights/Black Liberation:

Black Agenda Radio for Week of July 8, 2019

  • Bruce Dixon “a Real Soldier” of the Movement: BAR managing editor Bruce Dixon, the former Black Panther and lifelong activist who died from blood cancer at age 68, was “ a real soldier in the sense that he was willing and eager to take on any aspect of the liberation struggle and to explore all of the questions that face us, with the aim of creating the most efficient mechanisms for movement politics,” said BAR executive editor Glen Ford, speaking at the Left Forum conference in New York City.

  • Money Rules in US, Not the People: “If the people who write or bundle the checks ca decide who becomes president, then that is proof-positive that we do not have a democracy,” said BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley, speaking at the Left Forum conference in New York City. This dictatorship of the rich is embedded in the raucous façade of duopoly party politics, which compels people to choose one villain or the other. “Anybody that didn’t vote for the Democrats is blamed for Trump being in the White House,” said Kimberley.

  • The Banks are King of the Imperial Order:BAR contributor Danny Haiphong told the Left Forum that “anti-imperialism is the only antidote” for US-led global austerity. “The leftish elements in the Democratic Party have little problem with the fact that US military supremacy is the backbone of imperialism,” said Haiphong. “Tulsi Gabbard has been blacked out just for uttering the notion of anti-interventionism”

  • Race to the Bottom is Imperial Plan: “The decline in US living standards and economic security is not a side effect of globalization – it is the intended effect of this global regime that is being imposed,” said BAR executive editor Glen Ford, at the Left Forum in New York City. “The capitalist imperial consensus is to destroy all impediments to the most profitable exploitation of labor and technology.” That’s why most new US employment consists of “shit jobs.”

  • All US White Groups Implicated in Slavery and Black Oppression: Katrina Browne, a descendant of Rhode Islanders who were the “largest slave-trading family in US history,” told a congressional committee considering the HR 40 reparations study bill that all of US society was “implicated” in slavery. This includes immigrants that arrived after Emancipation, who were allowed to “leap-frog over Black families, with devastating consequences to the present day.” Browne is producer of the Emmy-nominated film, “Traces of the Trade: A Story from the Deep North.”

  • Mumia Says He’s Going Blind: : The nation’s best known political prisoner recently noticed “that I could no longer see a single face” among the “river of men passing by” in Pennsylvania’s Mahanoy prison. “I realized to my horror that I was functionally blind,” said Mumia Abu Jamal, who has faced several medical crises in his 38 years of incarceration in the death of a Philadelphia cop. “My vision has become sp poor that I’ve used voices to recognize people, as a blind man does.”

  • US Non-Wars Kill Millions

Black Agenda Radio on the Progressive Radio Network is hosted by Glen Ford and Nellie Bailey. A new edition of the program airs every Monday at 11:am ET on PRN. Length: one hour.

Labor:

Economy:

With Three Felony Counts Already, Did JPMorgan Chase Really Need to Own a Ship Containing 20 Tons of Cocaine?  CEO of the Wall Street mega bank, JPMorgan Chase, has weathered one scandal after another during his tenure, including the bank pleading guilty to an unprecedented three criminal felony counts in the past five years. Now the bank is back in the news for owning a massive container ship which was seized last week in the Philadelphia seaport by U.S. Customs and Border Protection following the discovery of 20 tons of cocaine located in containers on the ship on June 17. The cocaine is estimated to have a street value of $1.3 billion. By Pam Marten and Russ MartensFollowing Deutsche Bank’s News, Every Major Wall Street Bank Closed in the Red YesterdayAs of early this morning, Deutsche Bank’s restructuring plan is looking a lot like the lifeboat plan for the Titanic. Research analysts have expressed skepticism that the plan will work and the bank’s stock performance is backing up that assessment. In overnight trading in Frankfurt, the stock had cumulatively lost 10 percent of its value in less than two days of trading since the details of its restructuring were made public. Deutsche Bank’s shares also trade on the New York Stock Exchange, which opens at 9:30 a.m. By Pam Martens and Russ MartensWorld:

British Citizen Assassinated  for Oposing The 2003 Iraq War and Its  Justification of Iraq’ Weapons of Mass Destruction!:  Damning new evidence that Dr Kelly DIDN’T commit suicide: The disturbing flaws in the official government story surrounding the death of Blair’s chemical weapons expert

  • Official explanation was that the weapons expert had taken his own life
  • But since Dr Kelly’s death in 2003, time has done nothing to dispel suspicion
  • Successive governments have refused to allow full coroner’s inquest to be held

More than 15 years have passed since Dr David Kelly was found dead in an Oxfordshire wood in one of the darkest episodes of Tony Blair’s time as Prime Minister.. . . He was quite used to confrontation and pressure: he’d been a weapons inspector in Iraq, for goodness’ sake. I thought his famous grilling by the Foreign Affairs Committee had been distasteful, and symptomatic of the committee’s stupidity, but it hadn’t been that bad. And the affair was tailing off. Politics was breaking for the summer, both the BBC and I had refused to confirm or deny whether David was my source, and the battle between us and Downing Street had essentially reached stalemate.  What a lot I didn’t know. Even now, almost precisely 10 years since David Kelly’s last journey, we are still learning just how extraordinary and inexcusable the behaviour of our rulers was – both towards him, and in the wider cause, defending the Iraq war, for which he was outed and died. On July 18 2003, I did not consider myself a shockable person; I was an experienced, sceptical journalist with, I thought, a realistic idea of how politicians, intelligence officers and civil servants behaved. But over the months and years that followed, my views, and those of most of the country, changed. To borrow the famous words of David Astor over Suez, we had not realised that our government was capable of such folly and such crookedness. By  Miles Goslett

Britain: the rise and fall of the Tory Party The Conservative and Unionist Party is in the midst of a monumental crisis. This is more than raised voices and red wine on the sofa – this is an existential crisis that threatens to tear the party apart. The Tory Party was once the envy of the ruling classes across the world. But now the Conservatives are regarded as a laughing stock. The party’s reputation lies in tatters. It is caught in a political vice, threatened from all sides with complete collapse. And so much for this ‘Unionist’ party. A recent YouGov poll of Tory members found that 63 percent would risk seeing Scotland go independent in order to carry out Brexit. The same survey suggested that 59 percent wanted Brexit even if it led to Northern Ireland leaving the Union  By Rob SewellLabour Leader Corbyn to Demand Second Referendum on Brexit  The Labour leader said his party would campaign for remaining in the EU in the case of such a national vote. The Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn Tuesday said that he will request the next British prime minister to put the Brexit plan to a second referendum on the European Union membership, adding that his party would be in favor of a remain vote.Syriza’s election defeat: A balance sheet of a political betrayalThe election defeat Sunday of the Syriza (“Coalition of the Radical Left”) government brings to a close a strategic experience for the Greek and international working class. When Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras took office four years ago, pledging to end the European Union (EU) austerity Memorandum, the entire middle-class pseudo-left declared the party’s victory a massive triumph for the working class and a “radical” alternative to capitalism. These forces held Syriza up as a model for all the parties and political leaders “of the 99 percent”—from the Podemos party in Spain to British Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn and America’s self-styled “socialist” candidate Bernie Sanders. Instead, Syriza imposed a set of deeper austerity measures than any government in modern history, save the Stalinist Communist Party in its dissolution of the USSR, while turning the country into a quasi-police state and carrying out the most draconian anti-refugee policy in all of Europe.

Greece: political conclusions from the general elections of 7 July – part oneOn July 6, 2013, a train hauling crude oil from North Dakota’s Bakken region derailed in Lac-Mégantic, Quebec, resulting in fires and explosions that killed 47 people and wiped out a large part of the small Canadian town’s center. At the time I was living in Albany, New York, which had become a major distribution point for Bakken oil delivered to the Port of Albany in mile-long trains like the one that devastated Lac-Mégantic. In the six months following the deadly disaster, several more trains of Bakken oil derailed and exploded across North America. As the risk of these oil trains became very apparent, I began investigating how the trains could be allowed to travel through communities like mine in Albany and started publishing my findings here at DeSmog. Now, just after the six year anniversary of the Lac-Mégantic disaster, I have compiled all of that research into the new book Bomb Trains: How Industry Greed and Regulatory Failure Put the Public at Risk. By Stamatis Karagiannopoulos – editor of EPANASTASI (“Revolution”) and Marxistiki Foni (“Marxist Voice”)  Health, Education, and Welfare:

The government of the United States can pass laws in a few days to spend tens of trillions of dollars for war and the bailout of Wall Street and the bankers. Yet, those who ‘govern’, pass universal healthcare for themselves, but they cannot spend even one trillion dollars for universal health for those who are ‘governed’! This is what is considered, by the powers the to be,  a democracy and part of the democratic way. — Roland Sheppard, Let The People Vote on Healthcare!

PG&E Robber Baron Redux

PG&E admits its equipment likely sparked California’s most destructive wildfire

PG&E Caused California Wilafires — PG&E Once Again Wants Ratepayers for PG&E’s Deferred Maintenance Profitable Policy of Deferred Maintenance  PG&E asked California regulators Monday for a hefty increase in rates and profits, raising average customer bills by more than $20 a month, saying the hike is needed to attract investment capital and deal with wildfire safety as the utility struggles in bankruptcy.

The request draw a sharp rebuke from Gov. Gavin Newsom’s press secretary Nathan Click late Monday: “While California is working hard to reduce wildfire risk and create a sustainable energy future, PG&E is requesting massive increases in costs to ratepayers in order generate profits for investors – all while wildfire victims sit in bankruptcy. The governor strongly believes ratepayers shouldn’t be on the hook for unnecessary increases as the state’s process plays out.”Along with an earlier rate increase proposed in December, PG&E’s new request would increase average household bills by $22.67 a month for electricity and natural gas, beginning in January 2020. —Gavin Newsom blasts PG&E’s request to raise rates and profits as debate over wildfire costs rages

Below is my essay that waswritten 13 tears ago.: PG&E Ripoff: Return of the Robber Barons

Daily News Digest July 4, 2019

 Daily News Digest July 4, 2019

Daily News Digest Achives

Since World War I, ‘the war to end all wars’, there have been perpetual wars for perpetual peace, this Laura Gray’s cartoon from the front page of The Militant August 18, 1945, under banner headline: “There Is No Peace” Could Still Be Published Today!During This Economic Crisis, Capitalism’s Three Point Political Program: Austerity, Scapegoat Blacks, Minorities, and ‘Illegal’ Immigrants for Unemployment, and  The Iron Heel.

Democracy?:  As the Capitalist Robber Barons Steal from the 99%: Only the 1% Voted For Austerity — The 99% Should Decide On Austerity — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From Austerity!  Under Austerity, All of the World Will Eventually Be Pauperized, Humbled, and Desecrated Like Greece and Puerto Rico.

Image of the Day:

Frederick Douglas Invasion And Immigration Are Two Sides To The Same Coin

Quotes of the Day:

The Fourth of July— Why I celebrate the Fourth of July I celebrate and support the Declaration of Independence as a revolutionary document.

Due to the present destructive course of American capitalism, which in its quest for a Pax Americana and its perpetual wars, puts the property rights of capitalism and their ‘right’ to make a profit before, to paraphrase the Declaration of Independence, our unalienable Rights to Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness — the right to a safe habitat for humanity and our very existence as a species; it therefore follows, that, To secure these rights, it is our right and our duty, to throw off such an economic system and its government To provide our own New World Order’ to provide for our future security! To quote Fidel Castro, “Tomorrow it will be too late to do what we should have done a long time ago!” — Roland Sheppard

What, to the American slave, is your 4th of July? I answer; a day that reveals to him, more than all other days in the year, the gross injustice and cruelty to which he is the constant victim. To him, your celebration is a sham; your boasted liberty, an unholy license; your national greatness, swelling vanity; your sound of rejoicing are empty and heartless; your denunciation of tyrants brass fronted impudence; your shout of liberty and equality, hollow mockery; your prayers and hymns, your sermons and thanks-givings, with all your religious parade and solemnity, are to him, mere bombast, fraud, deception, impiety, and hypocrisy—a thin veil to cover up crimes which would disgrace a nation of savages. There is not a nation on the earth guilty of practices more shocking and bloody than are the people of the United States, at this very hour. — Frederick Douglas, July 5, 1852

Videos of the Day:

Capitalism Tells the World: Profits Come First! Burn Baby Burn!: G20 Members Dole Out Coal Subsidies Despite Climate Crisis Talk  A new report documents G20 member states giving $63.9 billion in subsidies per year to King Coal, while professing the urgency of the climate crisis. The study says this may “underestimate the actual amounts of support provided,” due to lack of transparency in finance figures U.S.:

The United States is not a Democracy (A government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly)! Only the 1%, through their ownership of the Republicrats and who profit from war and the war budget, vote for War and the war budget — A policy, which Gore Vidal called a  Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace.— The 99% Should Decide On War — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From War!  Under a Democracy, The 99% would have the right to vote on the policy of Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace!

Democrats Are Complicit in Trump’s Fearmongering About Immigrant YouthWhenThey See Us, Ava DuVernay’s miniseries about the wrongful convictions of the Central Park Five, was the most-watched series on Netflix during the first half of June. The runaway success of this painful series about Black and Brown boys who were caught up in a national hysteria about violent “wolfpacks” of dark-skinned youth is the latest moment in an ongoing societal reckoning with the racist mass incarceration policies of the ’80s and ’90s.  Of course, not everyone is taking part in this reckoning. Donald Trump refuses to apologize for his own prominent role in persecuting the Central Park Five — in 1989 he took out fullpage newspaper ads that proclaimed his desire to “hate” the accused teenagers, his hopes that they “be forced to suffer,” and for New York to bring back the death penalty. Trump continues to insist on their guilt years after overwhelming evidence exonerated them. By Danny KatchEnvironment:

Capitalism Fouls Thing Up!Civil Rights/Black Liberation:

Progress?

Brown v. Board of EducationThe Resegregation of American Schools

Black Agenda Radio for Week of July 1, 2019

  • Corporate Media Monger for War The corporate media seemed disappointed that President Trump “pulled back” from attacking Iran after that nation shot down a US spy drone. Said BAR senior columnist Margaret Kimberley: “For all of their alleged opposition to Trump, we can see that they are all still very much on board with the imperial project and with the belief that the United States has the right to intervene anywhere in the world, at any time.”
  • Starving Black Schools and Scapegoating Communities Although many urban school districts are returning to local control following state takeovers, these Black and brown schools remain underfunded, said Jeff Bryant, senior correspondent for Our Schools. “The school districts that need the most money because of poverty issues, the density of special needs students – many of these districts actually get the least money from the state” and will wind up in the same shape as before states seized control.
  • The Dem’s Pale Version of Green New Deal Howie Hawkins, candidate for the Green Party’s presidential nomination and the original architect of the Green New Deal, later adopted by the Greens, said leftish Democrats are putting forward a “diluted” version of his brainchild. The watered-down Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez measure is a non-binding resolution, but Hawkins notes that House Speaker Pelosi “won’t bring it to the floor for a vote.”
  • Eddie Africa is Free MOVE activist Eddie Africa was released from a Pennsylvania prison after four decades of incarceration in the death of a Philadelphia policeman. The officer likely died from police gunfire in the 1971 confrontation.Mumia Abu Jamal, the nation’s best known political prisoner, said Africa was subjected to “a kind of cruelty that most prisoners have never seen nor imagined,” including beatings and an attempt to castrate him.
  • Jalil Muntaqim’s Family Awaits Him Billie Bottoms Brown, the 85 year-old mother of Anthony Bottoms, also known as Jalil Abdul Muntaqim, hopes to take her son on a sea cruise if he is granted parole in September, his eleventh appearance before the board. Muntaqim has spend 48 years in prison in the death of two New York City cops. His co-defendant, Herman Bell, was released last year over the objections of the governor and the mayor. Billie Bottoms Brown says she’ll try to help Muntaqim “relax, unwind and try to reacclimatehimself to outside of those walls.”
Labor:

Economy:

One part of ehe Uncounted: Youth Who Never Were Employed: The July 2018 labor force participation rate for 16- to 24-year-old men, at 61.1 percent, was down 1.2 percentage points over the year. The rate for young women, at 60.0 percent, rose 1.2 percentage points during the same period, reducing the gap in labor force participation between young men and women. Whites had the highest youth labor force participation rate in July 2018, at 62.8 percent. The rate was 56. 5 percent for Blacks, 43.3 percent for Asians, and 58.0 percent for Hispanics. Over the year, the labor force participation rate rose for Hispanics (+1.4 percentage points) and declined for Asians (-4.1 points). The decline among Asians offset a similar increase (+4.3 percentage points) between July 2016 and 2017. Labor force participation rates in July 2018 for Whites and Blacks were essentially unchanged from a year earlier .— Employment and Unemployment Among Youth Summary

WikiLeaks Bombshell: Emails Show Citigroup Had Major Role in Shaping and Staffing Obama’s First TermSudan and Algeria have avoided mistakes of 2011Images of popular protests that recall the revolutionary movement of 2011 have dominated news from the Arabic-speaking world for months. Uprisings began in Sudan on December 19 and in Algeria with the marches of February 22. They revived memories of the huge, peaceful demonstrations early in the Arab Spring that shook Tunisia, Egypt, Bahrain, Yemen, Libya, and Syria. Commentators have been more cautious this time, asking questions rather than commenting directly, mindful of the bitter disappointment that followed their initial euphoria over the Arab Spring. The repression of the 2011 uprising in Bahrain, crushed after only a few weeks with the help of the other oil monarchies of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), could have been the exception, given the unique characteristics of that club of states. But two years later the region entered a counterrevolutionary phase, with a new chain reaction going the other way.  By Gilbert Achcar

Paul Weiss, the Law Firm that Has Represented Citigroup through Serial Fraud Charges, Is the Number One Donor to Democratic Presidential Hopeful Kamala HarrisAccording to the Center for Responsive Politics, which keeps meticulous tabs on political campaign flows, as of this morning, the law firm Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison – which has represented Citigroup through more than two decades of serial fraud charges – is the number one campaign donor to the Democratic Presidential hopeful Senator Kamala Harris. As the Center notes, the money isn’t coming from the law firm itself, but from its “PACs; their individual members, employees or owners; and those individuals’ immediate milies.” By Pam Martens and Russ Martens

Algeria, Sudan…: The Seasons After the Arab Spring — Recent uprisings in Sudan and Algeria have avoided mistakes of 2011  Images of popular protests that recall the revolutionary movement of 2011 have dominated news from the Arabic-speaking world for months. Uprisings began in Sudan on December 19 and in Algeria with the marches of February 22. They revived memories of the huge, peaceful demonstrations early in the Arab Spring that shook Tunisia, Egypt, Bahrain, Yemen, Libya, and Syria. Commentators have been more cautious this time, asking questions rather than commenting directly, mindful of the bitter disappointment that followed their initial euphoria over the Arab Spring. The repression of the 2011 uprising in Bahrain, crushed after only a few weeks with the help of the other oil monarchies of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), could have been the exception, given the unique characteristics of that club of states. But two years later the region entered a counterrevolutionary phase, with a new chain reaction going the other way.  By   Gilbert Achcar

WikiLeaks: Citigroup Exec Gave Obama Recommendation of Hillary for State, Eric Holder for DOJ  The Presidential election of 2008 was held on November 4, with Barack Obama winning on a promise of delivering “hope” and “change” to a nation in the midst of the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression. At that time, Citigroup was a financial basket-case. It had already received $25 billion from the government’s bailout program known as the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) in October; it was secretly receiving hundreds of billions of dollars more each month in below-market rate, revolving loans from the Federal Reserve — information which the Fed refused to make public despite multiple Freedom of Information Act requests from the media; and Citigroup was just 19 days from more hemorrhaging, requiring an additional government infusion of $20 billion and asset guarantees of more than $300 billion. Citigroup’s stock was at $13.99, a decline of 63 percent in just 12 months and it was on its way to eventually trade as a penny stock, at 99 cents.By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: October 11, 2016World:

Sudan and Algeria have avoided mistakes of 2011  Images of popular protests that recall the revolutionary movement of 2011 have dominated news from the Arabic-speaking world for months. Uprisings began in Sudan on December 19 and in Algeria with the marches of February 22. They revived memories of the huge, peaceful demonstrations early in the Arab Spring that shook Tunisia, Egypt, Bahrain, Yemen, Libya, and Syria. Commentators have been more cautious this time, asking questions rather than commenting directly, mindful of the bitter disappointment that followed their initial euphoria over the Arab Spring. The repression of the 2011 uprising in Bahrain, crushed after only a few weeks with the help of the other oil monarchies of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), could have been the exception, given the unique characteristics of that club of states. But two years later the region entered a counterrevolutionary phase, with a new chain reaction going the other way.  By   Gilbert Achcar

Istanbul elections and the brewing crisis in TurkeyThe mayoral election in Istanbul on 23 June 2019 represents a significant blow to the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP). The opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) won with almost 55 percent of the vote, bringing an end to the AKP’s dominance of the city, which lasted over 20 years. Despite being a local election, it has been become a rallying point for anti-AKP sentiments and ultimately a damning referendum on the current leadership of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. By Oliver Brotherton

Reject Colonialism; Fight Extradition Law with Class politics  Hong Kong’s massive movement against the Beijing sponsored extradition law is showing no signs of fizzling out, after 500,000 people joined a march yesterday, the anniversary of the handover from Britain to Hong Kong. However, the movement is already at a crossroads, for it has reached a limit of what can be achieved without leadership and programme.  By Dan MorleyHealth, Education, and Welfare:

The government of the United States can pass laws in a few days to spend tens of trillions of dollars for war and the bailout of Wall Street and the bankers. Yet, those who ‘govern’, pass universal healthcare for themselves, but they cannot spend even one trillion dollars for universal health for those who are ‘governed’! This is what is considered, by the powers the to be,  a democracy and part of the democratic way. — Roland Sheppard, Let The People Vote on Healthcare!

Full Transcript: What to the Slave Is the Fourth of July?   By Frederick Douglass

“What to the Slave is the Fourth July?” by Frederick Douglass is not only a brilliant work of oratory. It speaks to our every frustration spurred by the gap between the ideals of the United States and the reality we witness every day; between the Bill of Rights and our decaying civil liberties; between the USA’s international declarations of human rights and the ordered drone attacks backed by presidential “kill lists”; between the words “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” and a nation that leads the world in jailing its own citizens; between our highest ideals and our darkest realities. Here’s hoping people take the time to read the entirety of Douglass’s brilliant speech; even though his were words that spoke directly to his moment in history, they still ring with an unsettling power. As Douglass says: “Had I the ability, and could I reach the nation’s ear, I would today pour out a fiery stream of biting ridicule, blasting reproach, withering sarcasm, and stern rebuke. For it is not light that is needed, but fire; it is not the gentle shower, but thunder. We need the storm, the whirlwind, and the earthquake.”— Dave Zirin

Daily News Digest June 28, 2019

Daily News Digest June 28, 2019

Daily News Digest Achives

Since World War I, ‘the war to end all wars’, there have been perpetual wars for perpetual peace, this Laura Gray’s cartoon from the front page of The Militant August 18, 1945, under banner headline: “There Is No Peace” Could Still Be Published Today!During This Economic Crisis, Capitalism’s Three Point Political Program: Austerity, Scapegoat Blacks, Minorities, and ‘Illegal’ Immigrants for Unemployment, and  The Iron Heel.

Democracy?:  As the Capitalist Robber Barons Steal from the 99%: Only the 1% Voted For Austerity — The 99% Should Decide On Austerity — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From Austerity!  Under Austerity, All of the World Will Eventually Be Pauperized, Humbled, and Desecrated Like Greece and Puerto Rico.

Image of the Day:

It Is Not Wat – It Is Murder!

Encironmental Racism: ‘The environmental front line’: Patterns of development affect West Berkeley residentsQuotes of the Day:

The moral test of government is how that government treats those who are in the dawn of life, the children; those who are in the twilight of life, the elderly; those who are in the shadows of life, the sick, the needy and the handicapped. — Hubert Humphrey 

You cannot be a moral person and support Israeli apartheid and colonialism — I’m sorry. We salute the Jewish survivors who strip away the phony moral justification for opposing BDS against Israel. —Ajamu Baraka

Let’s be clear: The Trump admin sent a drone into what Iran says was its sovereign airspace. The US knew Iran would shoot it down in self-defense—but the US gov also knew the corporate media would obediently portray this as Iranian “escalation,” helping justify Trump’s aggression.  — Ben Norton

“In the Trump world, there is no bargaining, only ultimatums,” said PEER executive director Tim Whitehouse, a former EPA enforcement attorney — With New ‘Imposed Contract,’ Trump’s EPA Tries to Neuter Worker Rights

Videos of the Day: 

“Bernie Sanders is the Enemy to Entrepreneurs” Says the Co-Founder of Home Depot

Honduras Erupts on Eve of 10th Anniversary of Coup

Istanbul Election Shakes President Erdogan’s Power

Where Do the Politics of Reparations Go From Here?

 U.S.:

The United States is not a Democracy (A government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly)! Only the 1%, through their ownership of the Republicrats and who profit from war and the war budget, vote for War and the war budget — A policy, which Gore Vidal called a  Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace.— The 99% Should Decide On War — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From War!  Under a Democracy, The 99% would have the right to vote on the policy of Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace!

The Bi-Partisn Government Child Snachers:

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Condemns Pelosi’s Move To Pass Senate Border Funding Bill Without Changes: ‘Hell No’  Democratic Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez spoke out against Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi Thursday for deciding that the House should approve a Senate-passed border funding bill without first trying to make changes. “Under no circumstances should the House vote for a McConnell-only bill w/ no negotiation with Democrats. Hell no,” the 29-year-old congresswoman tweeted about the Senate version of the bill, which will provide $4.6 billion in funding for operations at the southern border but without aspects many House Democrats had hoped to include. “That’s an abdication of power we should refuse to accept. They will keep hurting kids if we do.” In an earlier tweet, Ocasio-Cortez noted that the bill was not negotiated with the House despite Democrats offering “crucial amendments to protect  children and families.” “None are even being considered,” she added.

Trigger Happy Joint Chiefs of Staff Thin They can Win a Nuclears War: Don’t Leave Nukes on the Shelf. Use Them!  On June 20, the London Guardian ran a curious headline: “Nuclear Weapons: Experts Alarmed by New Pentagon ‘War-Fighting Doctrine.” Last week, a report from the Joint Chiefs of Staff was briefly available to the public on the Pentagon’s website. Titled “Nuclear Operations,” the report describes nuclear war in such upbeat terms that you will almost look forward to it. By Charles PiersonSyrian Refugee Terror Plot or Latest in Pattern of FBI-Manufactured Terrorism Cases? On the surface, the story of 21-year-old Syrian refugee and Pittsburgh resident Mustafa Mousab Alowemer has the elements to strike fear in many Americans and give ammunition to the Trump administration for its war on immigrants and refugees, especially those who would dare to flee violence in countries like Syria. By Kris HermesJockpocalypse: From the Ballpark to Team TrumpA half-century ago, the sporting Cassandras predicted that the worst values and sensibilities of our increasingly corrupted civic society would eventually affect our sacred games: football would become a gladiatorial meat market, basketball a model of racism, college sports a paradigm of commercialization, and Olympic sports like swimming and gymnastics a hotbed of sexual predators.  Mission accomplished! By Robert Lipsyte

Our ‘Crotch Grabbing President’: After Demanding ‘Human Decency, Plain and Simple,’ Highlights Magazine Commended for Powerful Rebuke of Trump’s Abuse of Children  “When a 72-year-old, apolitical children’s magazine feels the need to speak out you know we are lost as a country.” The popular children’s magazine Highlights is receiving praise on Wednesday after issuing powerful condemnation of the Trump administration’s family separation policy at the border, with its CEO saying the U.S. government’s current behavior is an affront to both “moral courage” and the publication’s core belief that “children are the world’s most important people.”  By Julia Conley

‘It is a Stain on Our Country’: Warren Joins Protest Outside Child Detention Facility in Florida“There are a lot of different ways that we get in the fight. And one of them is that you show up.” Sen. Elizabeth Warren, one of the frontrunners for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination, joined a protest in front of a migrant detention center Wednesday morning—hours before she was expected to join nine other members of her party for the first primary debate.  “There are a lot of different ways that we get in the fight,” Warren said to supporters on social media. “And one of them is that you show up.” By Eoin Higgins

The U.S.-Iran Imbroglio: Dangerous Lessons To Be Learned  The bizarre decisions and events over a 48-hour period between the United States and Iran outlined the dangerous times that we are confronting and point to Donald Trump as the most dangerous aspect of all.  Iran is a problem for U.S. interests, but not a genuine threat.  The same cannot be said for Trump whose instability and unpredictability threaten not only the United States but the entire global community.  The fact that his key advisers—National Security Adviser John Bolton and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo—are bellicose and even irrational worsens the situation.  The absence of a genuine national security process and the decline of U.S. diplomacy contributes to a situation that finds the Department of Defense and the Pentagon, without adult or even civilian supervision, playing an outsized role. By Melvin Goodman

Instigators of a Persian Gulf Crisis  Recent weeks have seen tensions between the United States and Iran soar, initially after a May 2019 incident in which four commercial vessels were struck in the Gulf of Oman (two Saudi oil tankers, one Norwegian and an Emirati ship), ebb thereafter and escalate yet again when a similar attack took place a month later on the Japanese Kokuka Courageous and Norwegian Front Altair tankers, also in the Gulf of Oman. By Rannie Amiri

Fool Me Twice Yogi Berra experienced “deja vu, all over again”. Marx revised Hegel, saying history repeats itself first as tragedy, then as farce. Bush the Lesser, riffing on who to blame for being fooled, got lost in his trope. Now unctuous, obtuse Pompeo is selling war on Iran, bringing all three to mind. You’d heard the one about the Gulf of Tonkin LBJ pitched?  And the one about Iraqi WMD Step’nfetchit Powell sold, ominously shaking a vial of foot powder?  And Obama’s somber rap about “Assad gassing his own people”? The question now is whether the American Public will do Charlie Brown to Lucy’s football trick again? By Paul EdwardsCivil Rights/Black Liberation:

Environmental Racism — Where They Built the Freeways: People Of Color Live With 66% More Air Pollution, US Study Finds African Americans in the north-east and mid-Atlantic are exposed to 61% more pollution particles from burning gasoline People of color live with 66% more air pollution, US study finds African Americans in the north-east and mid-Atlantic are exposed to 61% more pollution particles from burning gasoline. By Emily HoldenLabor:

With New ‘Imposed Contract,’ Trump’s EPA Tries to Neuter Worker Rights  Agency announces new collective bargaining agreement—which was not agreed upon The Trump administration continued its attacks on federal workers this week with a new “agreement” that would kneecap the power of unions representing EPA employees. The development, as watchdog group Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility  PEER) noted Wednesday, is a new “Master Collective Bargaining Agreement” between the federal agency and the American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE). Far from an agreement, said PEER, the document is really an “edict.” It was not the result of negotiations. “In the Trump world, there is no bargaining, only ultimatums,” said PEER executive director Tim Whitehouse, a former EPA enforcement attorney. By Andrea Germanos

At #WayfairWalkout Actions, Workers Denounce Company Profiting From Child Detention “The safety and well-being of immigrant children is always worth fighting for.”Protesters filled Boston’s Copley Square Wednesday afternoon as part of the “Wayfair Walkout,” where the company’s employees staged a work stoppage to protest the retailer profiting from President Donald Trump’s child detention policies. Hundreds of Wayfair workers and supporters took part in the Wednesday action both in Boston and in Brunswick, Maine. The Boston Globe reported that management “indicated there will be no retaliation for employees who participate in the walkout.”  By Eoin Higgins

Economy:

Terrorists? Titans Of Wall Street?Wall Street Banks, In Drag as Trade Associations, Fight Indictments for Manipulating Precious Metals MarketsOn July 18 of last year, the U.S. Department of Justice indicted two Merrill Lynch precious metals traders, Edward Bases and John Pacilio, charging them each with one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud affecting a financial institution and one count of commodities fraud each.  Pacilio was further charged with five counts of spoofing. (Spoofing is where a trader uses a high-speed computer to issue a rapid barrage of buy or sell orders, with no intention of executing the trades, in order to mislead the market and gain an advantage for his own position in the market.)   On Tuesday of this week, a unit of Merrill Lynch was given a deferred prosecution agreement in the same matter by the Justice Department in exchange for an agreement to cooperate. Merrill also agreed to pay a measly $25 million in fines and disgorgement. (The amount of the fine and disgorgement is like a fly on the backside of an elephant. The parent of Merrill Lynch, Bank of America, had profits of $7.3 billion in just the first quarter of this year.) Merrill’s promise to “cooperate” is also looking quite specious. By Pam Martens and Russ Martens

The Wolves Have Turned on Each Other on Wall Street   Some decades back, the late MIT economist Lester Thurow wrote this:  “Essentially, the economic problem is like that of the wolf and the caribou. If the wolves eat all the caribou, the wolves also vanish.”               What Thurow did not take into consideration is that if the wolf pack is large enough, it can survive for quite a while by turning on other wolf packs.  That’s what is happening right now on Wall Street. The wolves are at war with each other.   The New York Stock Exchange and Nasdaq have filed a lawsuit against the Securities and Exchange Commission and are slinging mud in court at a former, long-tenured JPMorgan Chase executive, Brett Redfearn, who now polices them at the SEC.     We’ll get to all that in a moment, but first some background. By Pam Martens and Russ MartensWorld:

Jeremy Corbyn | Our Schools

Jeremy Corbyn: Stop arms sales to Saudi Arabia now.

Venezuela Reveals Video, Audio Evidence Linked to April 30 CoupVenezuelan Minister of Communication, Tourism and Culture Jorge Rodríguez revealed Wednesday videos and evidence providing more details about the April 30 failed attempted coup, including division within the opposition forces that was a factor in the plan’s failure, while also the involvement of several foreign governments in the financing of the coup and its operatives.  “What Guaido doesn’t know, is that we had people in all the meetings where they planned hits on members of the government; we have all the recordings, videos and information necessary to face down a coup,” Rodriguez told reporters.Holocaust survivors condemn ‘massacre’ of Palestinians, call for BDS against Israel A group of Holocaust survivors and descendants of those targeted by Nazi Germany have harshly criticized Israeli actions in Gaza and called for boycotts, divestment and sanctions (BDS) against Israel. Following a letter from survivors of the Holocaust printed in the New York Times on Saturday, the International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network, which helped coordinate the letter, organized a press call Monday, where some of those who signed the letter spoke out against the assault on Gaza. By Alex Kane

When the puppet talks back to the puppeteer, the pepeteer is in trouble:Iraqi President: US Has No Right to Use Iraq as ‘Staging Post’ for Attack on Iran  “There is no military solution to this problem.” Iraqi President Barham Salih said Tuesday that the United States has no right to use his country as a launchpad for a strike against Iran. Salih, in his interview with CNN‘s Christiane Amanpour, also talked about the adverse impacts his own country has felt as a result of U.S. imposed sanctions, stressed the need to prevent another war, and warned that tearing up the nuclear deal entirely “could be disastrous for the entire neighborhood as a whole.” By Andrea Germanos

Health, Education, and Welfare:

The government of the United States can pass laws in a few days to spend tens of trillions of dollars for war and the bailout of Wall Street and the bankers. Yet, those who ‘govern’, pass universal healthcare for themselves, but they cannot spend even one trillion dollars for universal health for those who are ‘governed’! This is what is considered, by the powers the to be,  a democracy and part of the democratic way. — Roland Sheppard, Let The People Vote on Healthcare!

Spain’s Revolution Against Franco: the Great Betrayal Under the most difficult and dangerous conditions, Spanish workers launched a strike movement that is unparalleled in history. Nothing remotely resembling it can be seen in Nazi Germany or Mussolini’s Italy. Beginning with the heroic movement of the Asturian coalminers 1962, there was wave after wave of strikes, general strikes, demonstrations and protests.   This was a genuine revolution, which could and should have gone far further than it did. The Spanish workers and youth did everything in their power to bring about a revolutionary transformation of society. If they did not finally succeed, that was no fault of theirs. The Spanish revolution of the 1970s was shamefully betrayed by the leaders of the Communist and Socialist parties, who entered into an agreement with former fascists like Adolfo Suarez in order halt the revolutionary movement in its tracks. The result of this betrayal was the so-called democratic transition, which was merely a fig leaf to conceal the continuation of the old regime under the guise of a “parliamentary monarchy”. By Alan Woods

May 2019

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Daily News Digest February 21, 2019

  Daily News Digest February 21, 2019

Daily News Digest Archives

Laura Gray’s cartoon from the front page of The Militant August 18, 1945, under banner headline: “There Is No Peace”

During This Economic Crisis, Capitalism’s Three Point Political Program: Austerity, Scapegoat Blacks, Minorities, and ‘Illegal’ Immigrants for Unemployment, and  The Iron Heel.

Democracy?:  As the Capitalist Robber Barons Steal from the 99%: Only the 1% Voted For Austerity — The 99% Should Decide On Austerity — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From Austerity!  Under Austerity, All of the World Will Eventually Be Pauperized, Humbled, and Desecrated Like Greece and Puerto Rico.

Image of the Day:

Contain The Threat

Quotes of the Day:

Videos of the Day:

 U.S.:

Environment:

Big Energy:

Civil Rights/Black Liberation

BAR Abolition Spotlight: Diana Block  Roberto Sirvent: Can you please tell readers of the Black Agenda Report a little about your background and the work you do?  Diana Block: The California Coalition for Women Prisoners (CCWP) was founded in 1995 by women prisoners and their advocates. One of our founding members was a Black woman, Charisse Shumate, with sickle disease who dared to challenge the abusive health care that she and others were receiving in prison. Throughout our history, CCWP has been committed to challenging the institutional violence imposed on women, transgender people and communities of color by the prison industrial complex (PIC). We center the struggle for racial and gender justice and we prioritize the leadership of the people, families and communities most impacted by the PIC in building this movement. Our visiting program at the women’s state prisons is at the core of all our work. Our programs evolve in response to the guidance and insights of the people we visit and the changing conditions within the prisons and jails. Within that framework our programs fall into four major areas. First, we monitor and challenge the abusive conditions inside of the women’s prisons, including grossly inadequate health care, sexual harassment and abuse, solitary confinement and overcrowding. Second, we fight for the release of women, trans and gender non-conforming prisoners through individual advocacy and systemic reforms of parole and sentencing systems, including the extreme sentence of Life Without Parole (LWOP). Third, we support women and trans people in their process of re-entering the community upon release so they are able to survive, grow and become involved in the struggles for civil rights and social change. Fourth, we work in coalition with others to promote decarceration strategies, shifting state and local priorities away from incarceration and punishment towards education, employment, housing and overall social transformation. By Roberto Sirvent, BAR Abolition Spotlight Editor Buried Alive: The Story of Police State Racism in Chicago  Chicago media care more about the safety of a killer cop and the Jesse Smollett saga than victims of the city’s rabidly racist police. “Van Dyke’s heinous crime was all too consistent with a longstanding pattern of excessive force and even murder on the part of the Chicago Police Department.”“I cannot bury my husband”— Tiffany Van Dyke, wife of Jason Van Dyke, the murderer of Laquan McDonald Among the many different forms taken by 21st century U.S.-American racism, one is the curious way in which white-owned corporate media and the criminal justice system racially differentiate worthy from unworthy victims. Take the case of Jason Van Dyke, the white Chicago police officer who coldly executed the Black teenager Laquan McDonald on the evening of October 20th, 2014. The dash-cam videotape of the execution has been viewed by many millions of people. By Paul Street

CHICAGO, IL – SEPTEMBER 05: Demonstrators protest outside of the Leighton Criminal Courts Building as Jury selection begins in the murder trial for Chicago police officer Jason Van Dyke on September 5, 2018 in Chicago, Illinois. Van Dyke is accused of shooting 17-year-old Laquan McDonald 16 times and killing him on October 20, 2014. Protests erupted around the city after video of the shooting was released. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

“It’s Eco-Socialism or Death”  An interview with Kali Akuno Cooperation Jackson leader Kali Akuno on the Green New Deal, the need for mass civil disobedience, and the necessity of building an internationalist movement for eco-socialism. “We have to articulate a program that concretely addresses the class’s immediate and medium-term need for jobs and stable income around the expansion of existing “green” industries and the development of new ones.” The Green New Deal (GND) is now part of the national conversation. But for decades, social movements have been doing the on-the-ground work to resist fossil capitalism and envision a different future. Such grassroots social mobilization — but at a massive scale — is vital to ensuring the GND catalyzes transformative social change. As U.S. Intervention Germinates in Venezuela, We Must Not Forget the Implications for Haiti Haitians and Venezuelans are united by history and common struggle against the US behemoth that seeks to enslave the rest of the hemisphere. “Hugo Chavez provided cheap petroleum products and favorable credit terms to Haiti and 16 other nations.”As both Republicans and Democrats continue their plans to install a government in Venezuela that proves more tractable to their neoliberal agendas, we are also witnessing an uprising by the people of Haiti against the ongoing neocolonial control by the United States. The Haitian people are no strangers to the tentacles of United States interventionism, which has been ongoing since the 19-year occupation commenced by President Woodrow Wilson in 1915. The occupation included the seizing and relocation of Haiti’s financial reserves to the United States, as well as a re-write of the nation’s constitution, which, among other things, allowed for foreign entities to enjoy land-owning rights.   Black Alliance For Peace Letters from Our Readers Jahan Chowdhry, BAR Comments Editor  This week’s column discusses the Bernie Sanders campaign, Medicare for All, and white supremacy in Venezuela. The best letters came for “Freedom Rider: Black Voters Used to Destroy Bernie Sanders,” “Pelosi Sabotages Medicare For All, But Corporate Media Pretend Not to Notice,” and “In Venezuela, White Supremacy Is a Key Driver of the Coup.” In “Freedom Rider: Black Voters Used to Destroy Bernie Sanders” Margaret Kimberley argues that the liberal establishment is using false allegations of racism to turn black voters against the social democratic Senator  Prisons Are Building Databases of Incarcerated People’s Voice Prints  Hundreds of thousands of inmates’ voices have been imprinted, potentially ensnaring millions of family members, friends and supporters in the huge surveillance net. “Some programs even analyze the voices of call recipients outside prisons to track which outsiders speak to multiple prisoners regularly.” Roughly six months ago at New York’s Sing Sing prison, John Dukes says he was brought out with cellmates to meet a corrections counselor. He recalls her giving him a paper with some phrases, and offering him a strange choice: He could go up to the phone and utter the phrases that an automated voice would ask him to read, or he could choose not to and lose his phone access altogether. By George Joseph and Debbie Nathan BAR Book Forum: Roderick Ferguson’s “One-Dimensional Queer”  Gay liberation didn’t originate as a single-issue movement, and must confront neoliberalism and gentrification as well as anti-queer violence. By Roberto Sirvent, BAR Book Forum EditorVenezuela: A Unique Experience in Protagonist Democracy?   The issue for us all is: No to military intervention in Venezuela and full support for the right of Venezuela to defend itself. By Arnold August Brazilian Police Massacre 13 Youth in Bolsonaro “Crackdown” In keeping with the new president’s declaration that the police do not “kill enough,” militarized cops swept through a Rio de Janeiro favela with deadly effect. Seu Jornal — Rede TVT, Mekim-na-Save Projek

How to Answer Trump? Make America a Socialist Country Ocasio-Cortez and Sanders won’t align with Venezuela out of fear of being labeled “authoritarian” by the ruling elite. “None of demands put forward by Sanders or Ocasio-Cortez are possible without a massive transformation of society, like that in Venezuela nearly two decades ago.” President Donald Trump expressed horror regarding socialism’s popularity among sections of the U.S. population at his latest State of the Union address. He vowed that the United States would “never be a socialist country.” Beneath the optics of Trump’s address and Nancy Pelosi’s “shade” clap is the stark reality that all sections of the U.S. capitalist oligarchy are at war with socialism at home and abroad.The social democratic and self-proclaimed “socialist” camp behind Bernie Sanders remains largely excluded from the halls of Washington and the ruling class certainly has no plans for that to change anytime soon. Oligarchs in the Democratic Party have flooded the 2020 primary with corporate candidates or faux-liberals who are more than willing to obey the dictates of neoliberal capital. ByDanny Haiphong, BAR contributorNellie Bailey and GlenFordBlack Agenda Radio, Week of February 18, 2019 

Economy:

World:

Economy:

Health, Science, Education, and Welfare:

Why the Government The Assassinated Malcolm X  And Martin Luther King Jr.  By Roland SheppardUntitled-2. . . It’s impossible for a chicke to produce a duck egg… The system of this country cannot produce freedom for an Afro-American. It is impossible for this system, this economic system, this political system, this social system, this system period. It is impossible for it , as it now stands, to produce freedom right now for the Black man in this country — it is impossible.  And if ever a chicken did produce a duck egg, I’m certain you would say it was certainly a revolutionary chicken. . . . — Malcolm X, Harlem ‘Hate Gang’ Scare Militant Labor Forum, May 29, 1964

Picture1
Photo: Marion S. Trikosko/Agence France-Press/Getty ImagesMartin Luther King and Malcolm X in 1964.

I first started to write about Malcolm X’s assassination, after I watched the 1992 CBS documentrary, The Real Malcolm X, An Intimate Portrait of the man, narrated by Dan Rather. I then saw that Spike Lee’s documentary movie, Malcolm X, had left out the most of the events in the last year of Malcolm’s life, starting with March 12, 1964 Press Statement By Malcolm X. When Denzel Washington, acting as Malcolm X, is shown addressing this press conference, right after Malcolm’s statement: “There can be no black-white unity until there is first some’ black unity”, Denzel Washington did not state what Malcolm X said next, which was “There can be no workers solidarity until there is first some racial solidarity,” The statement about ‘workers solidarity’ showed some of Malcolm’s thinking and outlook at that time — he was becoming anti-capitalist in his political thinking.

I felt compelled to write this essay to show why this government, “the assassination leader of the world “ assassinated Malcolm X. But when I began to read more of what King had stood for at the end of his life, that he also was becoming anti-capitalist in his political thinking, before his life was ended, I realized the United States Government had the same motive to kill both Malcolm X Martin Luther King. When I discovered and realized the complicity, of the government, in both assassinations, I then felt compelled to write this essay, based upon what I learned and my own personal experience. Read More

Daily News Digest February 21, 2019

Daily News Digest February 21, 2019

Daily News Digest Archives

Laura Gray’s cartoon from the front page of The Militant August 18, 1945, under banner headline: “There Is No Peace”

During This Economic Crisis, Capitalism’s Three Point Political Program: Austerity, Scapegoat Blacks, Minorities, and ‘Illegal’ Immigrants for Unemployment, and  The Iron Heel.

Democracy?:  As the Capitalist Robber Barons Steal from the 99%: Only the 1% Voted For Austerity — The 99% Should Decide On Austerity — Not Just The 1% Who Profit From Austerity!  Under Austerity, All of the World Will Eventually Be Pauperized, Humbled, and Desecrated Like Greece and Puerto Rico.

Image of the Day:

Contain The Threat

Quotes of the Day:

Videos of the Day:

 U.S.:

Environment:

Big Energy:

Civil Rights/Black Liberation

Nellie Bailey and GlenFordBlack Agenda Radio, Week of February 18, 2019 

Economy:

World:

Economy:

Health, Science, Education, and Welfare:

Why the Government The Assassinated Malcolm X  And Martin Luther King Jr.  By Roland SheppardUntitled-2. . . It’s impossible for a chicke to produce a duck egg… The system of this country cannot produce freedom for an Afro-American. It is impossible for this system, this economic system, this political system, this social system, this system period. It is impossible for it , as it now stands, to produce freedom right now for the Black man in this country — it is impossible.  And if ever a chicken did produce a duck egg, I’m certain you would say it was certainly a revolutionary chicken. . . . — Malcolm X, Harlem ‘Hate Gang’ Scare Militant Labor Forum, May 29, 1964

Picture1
Photo: Marion S. Trikosko/Agence France-Press/Getty ImagesMartin Luther King and Malcolm X in 1964.

I first started to write about Malcolm X’s assassination, after I watched the 1992 CBS documentrary, The Real Malcolm X, An Intimate Portrait of the man, narrated by Dan Rather. I then saw that Spike Lee’s documentary movie, Malcolm X, had left out the most of the events in the last year of Malcolm’s life, starting with March 12, 1964 Press Statement By Malcolm X. When Denzel Washington, acting as Malcolm X, is shown addressing this press conference, right after Malcolm’s statement: “There can be no black-white unity until there is first some’ black unity”, Denzel Washington did not state what Malcolm X said next, which was “There can be no workers solidarity until there is first some racial solidarity,” The statement about ‘workers solidarity’ showed some of Malcolm’s thinking and outlook at that time — he was becoming anti-capitalist in his political thinking.

I felt compelled to write this essay to show why this government, “the assassination leader of the world “ assassinated Malcolm X. But when I began to read more of what King had stood for at the end of his life, that he also was becoming anti-capitalist in his political thinking, before his life was ended, I realized the United States Government had the same motive to kill both Malcolm X Martin Luther King. When I discovered and realized the complicity, of the government, in both assassinations, I then felt compelled to write this essay, based upon what I learned and my own personal experience. Read More

Daily News Digest February 20, 2019

Daily News Digest February 20, 2019

Daily News Digest Archives

Laura Gray’s cartoon from the front page of The Militant August 18, 1945, under banner headline: “There Is No Peace”

During This Economic Crisis, Capitalism’s Three Point Political Program:1. Austerity, 2. Scapegoating Blacks, Minorities, and ‘Illegal Immigrants’ for Unemployment, and, if necessary,3. The Iron Heel.

Democracy?: As the Capitalist Robber Barons Steal from the 99% — Only the 1%Voted For Austerity — The 99% Should Decide On Austerity — Not Just The 1%Who Profit From Austerity! Under Austerity, All of the World Will Eventually Be Pauperized, Humbled, and Desecrated Like Greece and Puerto Rico.

Image of the Day:

Bendib:Billionaires R-Us 

Quotes of the Day:

Robert Reiner claims that “(to) a large extent, a society gets the policemen if deserves.” Mr., Reiner is extremely optimistic about the police or extremely cynical about society. But undeniably, the history of our society is reflected in the history of its police. Much of that history clashes with our nation’s patriotic self-image. The history of America’s police is not the story of democracy so much as it is the preventionof democracy. Yet there is another story, an ever-present subtext—the story of resistance. It too, drives this narrative, and if there is a reason for hope anywhere in this book, we may find it here—amidst the slave revolts, strikes, sit-ins, protest marches, and riots. — Kristian Williams, in his forward of his book, Our Enemies in Blue Police and Power in America.

A Real Emergency: The United States’ Crumbling Infraststure:

Instead of using taxpayers’ money to build his useless $5.7 billion border wall — which migrants would cross anyway, whether by digging tunnels under it or climbing over it — Trump should use that money to rebuild America’s crumbling infrastructure. As anybody who flies from Beijing or other modern Asian airports to the United States can tell you, arriving at the biggest U.S. airports increasingly feels like landing in a Third World country. Rather than building a “big, beautiful wall” in the desert, Trump should modernize airports in New York, Los Angeles and Miami.   Our roads, bridges and internet connectivity are way behind other industrialized countries. The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) estimates that the country will need to spend about $4.5 trillion by 2025 to update its infrastructure, including roads, bridges and dams.­­ —Andres Oppenheimer, Instead of a border wall to fix a crisis that doesn’t exist, Trump should use the billions to fix America’s crumbling infrastructure

Videos of the Day:

Trump’s allies get set for fierce fight over emergency declaration

Public Citizen: Trump’s National Emergency Declaration Paves Way for Sweeping Authoritarianism

 U.S.:

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to introduce bill blocking Trump’s ‘fake national emergency’ Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Joaquin Castro have announced new legislation they intend to introduce as part of an effort to block Donald Trump’s national emergency declaration over the US-Mexico border. The Democratic politicians pointed to the National Emergencies Act that provides Congress the ability to “terminate the President’s emergency declaration”, according to Mr Castro. In a tweet following the announcement, Ms Ocasio-Cortez, a progressive freshman representative from NewYork City, wrote: “JoaquinCastrotx and I aren’t going to let the President declare a fake national emergency without a fight.” By Chris Riotta

Worshipping the Electronic ImageDonald Trump, like much of the American public, is entranced by electronic images. He interprets reality through the distortions of digital media. His decisions, opinions, political positions, prejudices and sense of self are reflected back to him on screens. He views himself and the world around him as a vast television show with himself as the star. His primary concerns as president are his ratings, his popularity and his image. He is a creature—maybe the poster child—of the modern, post-literate culture, a culture that critics such as Marshall McLuhan, Daniel Boorstin, James W. Carey and Neil Postman warned us about. By Chris Hedges 

Presidents’ Day Can Kiss My AssHere at Truthout, we observe our own holiday today: Native Sovereignty Day, recognizing the civil rights, human rights and humanity of the many peoples who were damn well here first. Doing so, we acknowledge that in a world without colonial displacement and genocide, the very concept of a “U.S. president” would not, in fact, exist. How did we wind up in this bizarre situation? Is our presidential fixation just an ossified holdover from British colonial days, some atavistic and self-destructive yearning to be ruled by an untouchable absolute leader? Is it the God thing, a lazy surrender to the Divine Right of Kings because having no say whatsoever is an easy out in a complex world? Or are we all captives of a mass mainstream news media which loves to cover the presidential horse race because it fills air time and column inches, thus sparing them the grind of actually reporting on policy and substance? By William Rivers Pitt

Environment:

Lack of proper health and safety regulation allows Robber Baron Contaractors to plunder government funds!:

Feinstein-Pelosi Obstruct Justice On Tetra Tech Eco-Fraud At Treasure Island & Hunters Point 6-17-18  (Video)

 Suspect Hunters Point shipyard contractor did similar work at Treasure Island

Corporate managers accused of directing an extensive fraud in the cleanup of San Francisco’s toxic shipyard led similar projects at nearby Treasure Island — work that apparently has never been rechecked since fraud at the shipyard was discovered, even as a $5 billion real estate development on the island speeds ahead. Tetra Tech EC, a subsidiary of the government contracting giant Tetra Tech Inc., is being sued for fraud by whistle-blowers and the Department of Justice. Federal prosecutors say the firm cut corners and falsified radiation tests while serving as a cleanup contractor at the former Hunters Point Naval Shipyard, a mothballed naval base tainted with radioactive substances that last for thousands of years and can cause cancer. By Jason Fagone and Cynthia Dizikes

Big Energy:

Civil Rights/Black Liberation:

The Best Police Money Can Buy  In the Fox series APB, police misconduct doesn’t exist, and privatization and technology can fix any problem. If one were to produce an infomercial proclaiming the benefits of a corporate-run high-tech police state, the result might be something like the new Fox series APB. The show follows the adventures of billionaire engineer Gideon Reeves (played by Justin Kirk), who, after witnessing a friend’s murder while on hold with 911, decides the cops are due for an upgrade.By Kristian Williams

Labor:

Economy:

Daily Update (February 18th to 19th): Unexpected Plunges in January Production and December Retail Sales Signaled Weakening Economy and Likely Early-2019 Recession; 12.6% Annual Decline in St. Louis Fed’s January Adjusted Monetary Base Was Worst Since Onset of Great Depression’s Second Down-Leg

4,823 U.S. Banks Have Disappeared Since 1999At the end of 1999, the year thatPresident Bill Clinton and his  Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin brokered the deal to repeal the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933 and allow the casino investment banks on Wall Street to gobble up deposit-taking banks, there were 10,220 federally insured banks and savings institutions in the United States. Today, that number stands at 5,397, a decline of 47 percent according to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC). What exactly happened to those disappeared banks?  We examined FDIC data to see if the sharp falloff in bank numbers was from failures or mergers. We found that the vast majority of the decline resulted from banks being absorbed in mergers. By the end of 2005, six years after the repeal of Glass-Steagall, the U.S. still had 8,832 federally insured banking institutions. But in just that year alone, 315 banks were lost to mergers. By 2010, the number of U.S. banking institutions had dropped to 7,657 with 197 institutions absorbed that year through mergers. In years 2015, 2016 and 2017, there were a total of 786 federally insured banking institutions absorbed through mergers.   The loss of competition in banking services has unleashed an unprecedented concentration of the life savings of Americans being held as deposits at a handful of behemoth Wall Street banks which simultaneously engage in high risk securities and derivatives trading – the very combination that led to the epic Wall Street banking collapses in 2008 and the 1930s. By Pam Martens

World:

Britain: Bye bye Blairites! Now show the rest the door Good riddance. This will be the sentiment amongst grassroots Labour members towards today’s news that a group of seven Blairites are splitting from the party. Delight at their departure will be mixed with immense anger towards the treacherous role that these right-wingers have been allowed to play over the past few years. The task now is to kick out the rest of the saboteurs who remain at large inside the Parliamentary Labour Party. This is why we need mandatory reselection. The announcement by the splitters came as a surprise to nobody. The names of those who have chosen to leave reads like a Who’s Who list of the most consistent Corbyn critics – a veritable rogues gallery of careerists and big business politicians. The shock is not that these gangsters have left the party, but that it has taken so long to get rid of them! By Adam Booth 

Britain: students rise up to fight capitalism’s climate crisis At least 10,000 students across the UK walked out of school on Friday 15 February, marking the arrival of the international School Strike 4 Climate movement in Britain. This movement has already mobilised hundreds of thousands of students in over 40 countries, with young people around the world participating in incredibly militant strikes and marches – the aim of which is to force governmental action on climate change. On Friday there were protests in around 60 locations nationwide. The largest event was in London, where a demo in Parliament Square attracted thousands of students. Ages ranged from sixth form down to primary school, with many students coming straight from classes, still wearing their school uniform. Supportive teachers and parents also joined in. It was clear, however, that this strike was organised and led by the students themselves. By Helena Nicholson

Economy:

Health, Science, Education, and Welfare:

The Day the Music Died: Malcolm X’s Assassination, Feb. 21, 1965 by Roland Sheppard (First Published by the San Francisco Bayview )

Malcolm X in 1964, flashing the infectious smile that drew people to him

In the afternoon of Feb. 21, 1965, I went to the Audubon Ballroom to hear Malcolm X speak. I also went to sell the newspaper, The Militant, a radical newspaper that printed the truth about Malcolm X, published his speeches and publicly defended him.

When I got to the ballroom, things were radically different – there were no cops. Normally, Malcolm’s meetings in Harlem were crawling with cops. As I was selling papers, Malcolm X approached the Audubon Ballroom. I offered to sell him the latest issue, but he told me, “Not today, Roland. I am alone and in a hurry.”

A while later as I entered the meeting room, again I did not see any cops. I went in to sit down where I normally sat along with the rest of the press in the front and the left side of the room. On the way to my seat, Gene Roberts, who later surfaced as a police agent member of the Black Panther Party, told me that I could not sit at my regular place but that on that day I had to sit in the front row on the right side of the hall, facing the stage.

As I sat down, I glanced over to where I normally sat and saw a large Black man with a navy blue-gray trench coat. When the meeting started, all was quiet as the crowd listened to Benjamin X introducing Malcolm X.

When Malcolm approached the podium, he gave the normal Muslim greeting for peace. At that point a disturbance occurred in the room. Two men were standing about halfway back in the room and to the right of Malcolm on stage. One was shouting, “Get your hand out of my pocket!”

Malcolm was trying to calm things down, when the men — one later identified as Talmadge Hayer — started running down the right aisle shouting and firing a pistol at Malcolm and ran out the exit doors by the stage, to the right of Malcolm X

Malcolm is wheeled out of the Audubon Ballroom on a stretcher, escorted by NYPD, on the fateful day, Feb. 21, 1965.

Suddenly I heard gunshots fired from all over the place, and I instinctively hit the floor. When I looked up, I saw Malcolm X standing up and glaring down at one of his assassins. At that point, from the corner of my eye, nearby to my left, I saw a flash from a gun as I watched Malcolm X fall down and back about 10 feet.

In that instant, as Malcolm died before my eyes, I suddenly realized how big he was and I realized that he was a giant in stature and in the world. This vision of Malcolm X, being assassinated, has haunted me ‘til this day.

The fatal blast, which I later found out to be from a shotgun, came from the area where I had seen the large Black man with a navy blue-gray trench coat! When I left the hall, Malcolm’s bodyguards told me that they had caught two of the assassins, one who was shot – Talmadge Hayer – and one whom the police took away.

A few weeks later, when I was questioned in the Harlem police station, I was shown a series of photos of people whom I recognized as members of the Nation of Islam or Malcolm’s organization. I also saw a picture of the large Black man with a navy blue-gray trench coat that I had seen at the Audubon Ballroom.

I was thinking of how to respond to the cops and how to say that I did not recognize the photos of Malcolm’s friends and supporters and the members of the Nation of Islam. I then told the cops that I had to go to the rest room.

When I got to the men’s room door, I saw the same large Black man coming out of the men’s room that I had seen in the Audubon Ballroom and in the photos that had just been shown to me. He walked by me, past the desks of the secretarial pool, and went to his office inside the police station!

At that point I knew that he and the government either killed Malcolm X or were part of the assassination plot. I became very nervous thinking about what I was going to say to the cops when I got back and how I was going to get out of the station alive.

I then came up with, “I cannot recognize anyone, for all Black people look the same.” The cops nodded in agreement and we were allowed to leave the police station.

Malcolm X was one of my heroes. He was the most honest mass leader that I have ever known or seen. He was a great orator and his speeches seemed like a conversation between himself and the audience.

His speeches were like music to my ears and have inspired me for the rest of my life in the fight for social justice. He was so human in his orations. I still remember him when he made the “Harlem Hate Gang Scare” speech at the Militant Labor Forum on May 29, 1964, and other speeches in which he chuckled a “heh heh” when he was about to make a special comment.

At that forum, he said: “It’s impossible for a chicken to produce a duck egg … The system of this country cannot produce freedom for an Afro-American. It is impossible for this system, this economic system, this political system, this social system, this system period. It is impossible for it, as it now stands, to produce freedom right now for the Black man in this country — it is impossible. And if ever a chicken did produce a duck egg (heh heh), I’m certain you would say it was a revolutionary chicken (heh heh).”

Martin Luther King and Malcolm X, both incomparable leaders, both assassinated – Photo: Trikosko, Library of Congress

Both he and Martin Luther King had come to similar positions about capitalism and the Vietnam War at the time of their death. That is why this government assassinated them. No one has followed in their footsteps.

From the point of view of this government, the world leader in political assassinations, the two assassinations worked. For to this day, no mass leader has had the courage to pick up where they left off. They were able to silence the art, science and truth of these two great orators. To me, Feb. 21 is “the day the music died.” It was the saddest day of my life.

For an in depth explanation of the government’s assassinations of Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, read my article, “The Assassinations of Malcolm X and Martin Luther King Jr.

Update: The assassin with the shotgun

On April 30, 2010, I received an email from John Judge, director of the Coalition on Political Assassinations, referring to an April 22, 2010, article titled For the First Time in History, The Face of William Bradley, Shotgun Assassin of Malcolm X-El Hajj Malik El Shabazz, in a Public Safety Campaign Commercial for Mayor Cory Booker! by Abdur-Rahman Muhammad.

William Bradley

In that article is the picture shown here of William Bradley, who is the man that I had seen in the Audubon Ballroom and in the photos that the Harlem police showed me while I was being interrogated. Bradley was the man I saw coming out of the men’s room, walking by me, past the desks of the secretarial pool, and into his office inside the police station, as I was going to the men’s room!

As I wrote in my original 2009 essay: “At that point I knew that he and the government either killed Malcolm X or were part of the assassination plot.” And now I know his name. William Bradley is the man that Talmadge Hayer identified as the one who shot the shotgun. Zak Kondo also identified William Bradley as the assassin with the shotgun.

In his article, Abdur-Rahman Muhammad states: “Although his name has been in the public domain now for well over three decades, ever since 1977 when Hayer filed his affidavit with famed lawyer William Kuntsler naming his accomplishes, nevertheless a face has never been attached to the name. Historian and member of the committee researching this story Zak Kondo published a marvelous book two decades ago on the assassination of Malcolm X, wherein he explored quite a bit of biographical material on the five assassins. Spike Lee even named the five killers in the credits of his movie. But in all of these years none of them, including ‘Willie’ Bradley, has ever filed a libel suit. And for good reason – they would lose.”

This video, “MALCOLM X The Assassination of Malcolm X,” shows the police catching a second man after Malcolm’s assassination.
MALCOLM X The Assassination of Malcolm X
Uploaded by polobylimsa. – Watch the latest news videos.

A new improved video, “The Hunt for William Bradley,” by Karl Evanzz in association of Shabazz Productions, identifies the man rescued from the crowd by the police as William Bradley. The video is contained in a collection of clips titled “Naked Lies: The Continuous War Against Malcolm X.” Shabazz Productions had previously produced: Omar Shabazz “Inside Job: Betrayal of the Black Messiah.”

Roland Sheppard is a writer and activist and former BA of the Painters Union in San Francisco. Email him at info@rolandsheppard.com  and visit his website, https://rolandsheppard.com/

Daily News Digest February 18, 2019

Daily News Digest February 18, 2019

Daily News Digest Archives

Laura Gray’s cartoon from the front page of The Militant August 18, 1945, under banner headline: “There Is No Peace”

During This Economic Crisis, Capitalism’s Three Point Political Program:  1. Austerity, 2. Scapegoating Blacks, Minorities, and ‘Illegal Immigrants’ for Unemployment, and 3. The Iron Heel.

Democracy?: As the Capitalist Robber Barons Steal from the 99% — Only the 1%Voted For Austerity — The 99% Should Decide On Austerity — Not Just The 1%Who Profit From Austerity! Under Austerity, All of the World Will Eventually Be Pauperized, Humbled, and Desecrated Like Greece and Puerto Rico.

Images of the Day:

This is a Real American Emergency

Who Are The Refugess? 

 Toxic Chemicals in Your Drinking Water

A community gets water from a contaminated source like lead which is deadly.

Quote of the Day:

As many of us heard the news about the water crisis in Flint, Michigan, we were both shocked and horrified that dangerous levels of lead could be present in the tap water used by a city full of people. But just because the water where you live isn’t contaminated by lead does not mean that it is truly safe. In fact, new research suggests that the drinking water used by more than six million Americans may have very high levels of toxic chemicals.— Toxic Chemicals in Your Drinking Water

Videos of the Day:

Trump Declares an Imperial Presidency – Paul Jay  Trump’s emergency order threatens to create an all powerful presidency and weaken a constitutional order that allows the elites to settle their differences within an electoral process – Paul Jay joins guest-host Jacqueline Luqman of ‘Luqman Nation’

Haiti Whistleblower Says Jovenel Moise, Michel Martelly are Drug Dealers and Murderers In this tell-all video, a former government enforcer turned whistleblower, named Jonas Belizaire, says puppet President Jovenel Moise and Michel Martelly are drug dealers and murderers and he was an eyewitness to their crimes.

‘Victory’ Deal Reached to End First Denver Teachers Strike in 25 Years

The Book: The Age Of Surveillance Capitalism

 U.S.:

Incarceration vs. education: America spends more on its prison system than it does on public schools – and California is the worstBy Valerie Bauman Social Affairs Reporter For Dailymail.Com

  • Most American states spend more on their prisons than they do on education – and California is the worst, investing $64,642 per prisoner compared to $11,495 per student – a $53,146 difference in spending priorities
  • The reasons include an incarceration rate that has tripled over the past three decades, the higher cost of caring for people in prisons 24 hours a day, and the higher number of workers required to operate a prison
  • New York, Connecticut, New Jersey and Rhode Island round out the top states spending more on prisons 

Trump’s Broken Promises to the Land of “American Carnage” In late November, General MotorsGM) announced that it had no plans to allocate any new products to its Lordstown, Ohio, plant after it discontinues production on the Chevrolet Cruze this March. The move essentially ends the plant’s last 1,600 jobs, and represents only the latest dispatch from the heartland of what President Trump has called “American carnage.” For 52 years, the Lordstown plant, nestled in Trumbull County in the state’s Mahoning Valley, served as one of the nerve centers of the Youngstown-Warren area. Youngstown produced steel: Miles of blast furnaces perpetually lit up the night skies, and locals referred to the accompanying pollution as “pay dirt,” since the steel mills meant prosperity.

Employees leave the GM Lordstown Plant on November 26, 2018, in Lordstown, Ohio. GM said it would end production at five North American plants including Lordstown, and cut 15 percent of its salaried workforce

Is Trump’s National Emergency a Step Toward Fascism? President Trump has now declared a national emergency to fund his long-sought border wall. It is no surprise that when a fascistic president like Trump starts throwing around the idea of a national emergency, media outlets like Esquire start asking whether “it might be time to start fireproofing the Reichstag,” a clear allusion to Hitler’s ascent to power in 1933. But is the comparison justified? Is Trump’s declaration of a national emergency a threat to American democracy?The short answer is: National emergencies are normal … until they’re not. The United States has been in a state of nearly continual national emergency since the passage of the National Emergencies Act in 1976. Trump’s national emergency would be the 32nd national emergency currently in effect. Others include selective embargoes on Syria, Libya, and South Sudan and opposition to the “Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction.” Congress can override a president’s national emergency, but only with a two-thirds majority vote. By Mark Bray 

Massive Rapid Response Protests Planned to Fight Trump’s National Emergency ‘Power Grab’“If Trump declares a national emergency for his racist and wasteful wall, expect thousands to hit streets in rapid response protests just days later—a mass, rapid visible outcry against the real emergency.” By Jake Johnson 

In Libya, “We Came, We Saw, He Died.” Now, Maduro? Libya is in a state of anarchic turmoil, with various groups fighting each other for control of the country, and as the Wall Street Journal reported last September, “Islamic State is staging a resurgence in chaotic Libya, claiming more than a dozen attacks in the North African country this year and threatening to disrupt the flow of oil from one of the world’s most significant suppliers.” To such mainstream media outlets as the Wall Street Journal the fact that oil supply is being disrupted is much more important than the savage IS attacks that result in slaughter of so many innocent people who are only foreigners, anyway. By Brian Cloughley

Trump administration condemned over delaying action on toxic drinking water EPA to spend at least another year considering whether to restrict toxic chemicals found in drinking water… The chemicals – known as PFOS and PFOA – are found in nonstick pots and pans, food packaging, and firefighting foam sprayed in drills on military bases. They seep into soil and groundwater in areas where they are manufactured and used. In high levels, the chemicals are linked with kidney and testicular cancer, ulcerative colitis, thyroid disease, high cholesterol and problems in pregnancy. The chemicals are so prevalent that they are estimated to be in the bloodstreams of nearly all Americans. By Emily Holden 

Environment:

New Poll Shows Increased Bipartisan Desire to Act on Climate Change The results, released in December, also show widespread bipartisan support for a Green New Deal and renewable energy

US coastal businesses hit by everyday impact of climate change, study shows Annapolis seeing sea rise at about twice the global rate. Flooding there foreshadows problems other coastal towns can expect When the parking lot in the bustling tourist zone of downtown Annapolis floods, the employees at Pip’s Dock Street Dogs restaurant take off their socks and shoes, wrap their legs in trash bags and wade out into the water. A lot of the time, it’s not even raining. High tides intensified by sea-level rise are just pushing the water inland, overwhelming the drainage system. By Emily Holden 

The Green New Deal, Capitalism and the State The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was created by Richard Nixon in 1970 as the official response to the nascent environmental movement. As laid out in the recently released Poison Papers, it was structured to be dependent on research from private firms that were paid by the chemical producers it regulates. Given the limited market for this research, these firms either roduced research conducive to the interests of their customers or they went out of business. By Rob Urie

Big Energy:

‘It’s About Economics’: Two Coal Plants to Close Despite Trump’s Tweet Trump is losing his rallying cry to save coal. The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) voted on Thursday to retire two coal-fired power plants in the next few years despite a plea from the president to keep one of the plants open.Earlier this week, the president posted an oddly specific tweet that urged the government-owned utility to save the 49-year-old Paradise 3 plant in Kentucky. It so happens that the facility burns coal supplied by Murray Energy Corporation, whose CEO is Robert Murray, is a major Trump donor.But the TVA board of directors voted 5-2 in favor of closing that plant as well as the Bull Run plant in Tennessee. By Lorraine Chow

Civil Rights/Black Liberation:

Labor:

World:

Cuba Warns US Moving Special Forces Closer to Venezuela Under Guise of ‘Humanitarian Intervention’“It is worth recalling that similar behaviors and pretexts were used to by the U.S. during the prelude to wars it launched against Yugoslavia, Iraq, and Libya.” By Jessica Corbett

Venezuela’s Missile Crisis: A Conversation with Juan ContrerasA grassroots leader from the 23 de Enero barrio in Caracas looks at the historical forces operating behind the showdown unfolding right now in the Bolivarian Republic. The claim that politics inevitably involves a struggle over historical meanings received spectacular confirmation in recent weeks. That’s because the political crisis that we are in the midst of right now – following Juan Guaido’s declaring himself president – saw the opposition to trying evoke the memory of pro-democracy rebellion that began on January 23, 1958. How do you understand this effort of Juan Guaido and his imperialist masters to appropriate that historical event, which was essentially a leftist victory, in the name of a coup d’etat? By By Cira Pascual Marquina – Venezuelanalysis.com

Economy:

Daily Update (February 15th to 18th): Unexpected Monthly Plunges in January Industrial Production and Manufacturing, and December Retail Sales Signal a Weakened Economy and Increasingly Likely Early-2019 Recession. — John Williams

Health, Science, Education, and Welfare:

Workers’ democracy in the Russian Revolution – part twoThe Russian Revolution is the greatest event in human history, because for the first time the working class not only led a revolution, but took power directly into their own hands and proceeded to transform society. The act is slandered as undemocratic, when in reality it involved the most far-reaching and revolutionary democracy the world has ever seen. In this two-part article, Daniel Morley explains how this worked in practice. By Daniel Morley

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said billionaires shouldn’t exist as long as Americans live in abject poverty  Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said a society that allows billionaires to exist while some Americans live in abject poverty is “immoral.”

  • She said Americans shouldn’t normalize economic inequality by idealizing the super-rich during a conversation with author Ta-Nehisi Coates at an event honoring the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. on Monday.
  • The New York Democrat recently suggested the US should hike marginal tax rates on Americans making more than $10 million.

“I’m not saying that Bill Gates or Warren Buffett are immoral, but a system that allows billionaires to exist when there are parts of Alabama where people are still getting ringworm because they don’t have access to public health is wrong,” Ocasio-Cortez said during an event honoring the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. on Monday. By Eliza Relman