Daily News Digest December 24, 2019

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: (1) Austerity, (2) Scapegoat Blacks, Minorities, and ‘Illegal’ Immigrants for Unemployment, and (3)  The Iron Heel

Always Remember That Obama Supported the Wall Street Bailout and Remember That President Obama, With a Majority Democrat Legislature, Established, in writing,  the United States Capitalist Austerity Program  — The Race to the Bottom/Pauperization of the 99%!

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:

Stokely Carmichael: ‘If You Work Hard!’

Quotes of the Day:

At a rally in Hersey, Pa., last week, multiple Trump supporters threatened violence if their leader was removed from power, with one man invoking his “.357 Magnum,” and another predicting a second civil war. One woman explained, “As a Trump supporter, I believe in him.” Do such statements not sound like those of cult members? How else to explain the fact that Trump has convinced millions of Americans that he stands up for them even while his policies have disproportionately benefited wealthy corporations? How else to make sense of how he spews lies at a record-breaking pace while at the same time claiming he is the only one telling the truth? — To Understand Trump, You Must Understand His Cult

Videos Of the Day:

“The First Cell”: Dr. Azra Raza on Why the “Slash-Poison-Burn Approach” to Cancer Has Failed

How to Save the World from Financialization


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.

Amid Impeachment Vote, Congress Passes Record Military Budget And Funds Trump’s Border Wall Three pieces of legislation passed Tuesday demonstrate the bipartisan support for war, austerity and attacks on democratic rights within the American political establishment.First, the Senate voted to approve the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) by the lopsided margin of 86–8, sending the record $738 billion military bill to President Trump to sign into law. Later the same day, the Democratic-controlled House of epresentatives approved two appropriations bills totaling nearly $1.4 trillion to provide funding to the military and other federal government agencies through September 2020. The right-wing basis on which the Democrats have impeached Trump is underscored by the bipartisan support for the fascistic president’s political agenda demonstrated in these budget measures. The military appropriations bill includes $1.375 billion to fund Trump’s border wall, while removing a provision in an earlier version that would have barred him from transferring money from other Pentagon accounts for his wall project. By Evan Blake

Why the Hell Did Democrats Just Extend the Patriot Act? House leadership included the measure in a government funding bill—and even members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus went along with it. By tucking the measure into a must-pass bill, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi forced many members who oppose the Patriot Act to vote in favor of its extension. “Although I do have serious concerns with reauthorizing Section 215,” Representative Bobby Rush of Illinois told The Hill, “we must focus on the bigger picture here.” In late October, Rush signed a letter co-authored by Representatives Rashida Tlaib and Earl Blumenauer, which read, “We will not support any legislation that extends Section 215’s sunset date if it fails to contain robust reforms that protect innocent people from unjust surveillance.” Ultimately, the funding bill passed 231-192, mostly on party lines. Some advocates have questioned whether the Congressional Progressive Caucus (CPC), which includes the Squad, should have done more to combat—or, at least, register its dissatisfaction with—the last-minute maneuver by Democratic leadership. On Wednesday morning, leaders of the CPC and the libertarian House Freedom Caucus circulated a joint letter on Capitol Hill calling for extensive reforms to the Patriot Act before it is reauthorized. But when it came time for the floor vote, CPC co-chairs Pramila Jayapal and Mark Pocan voted in favor of the funding measure. So did most of the caucus’s members. The only person in CPC leadership to vote against the bill was Omar. By Sam Adler-BellImpeachment: The Road To Nowhere Leads To . . . Nowhere Capping months of mind-numbingly repetitive “debates,” the Democrats in the House of Representatives voted on Dec. 17 to impeach President Donald Trump on charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. The votes on each charge were nearly identical and almost entirely along party lines. The Democrats’ impeachment case against the despicable Trump regime had nothing to do with what actually makes it despicable. Trump is openly racist, sexist, anti-environment, anti-labor, homophobic, anti-poor, anti-homeless, anti-Palestinian and more. But the Democratic party leaders’ impeachment strategy deliberately ignored all of that and instead revolved around the ludicrous charge that Trump weakened “our national security” by delaying a shipment of anti-tank missiles, sniper rifles, and other military equipment to Ukraine for war against Russia. No mention was made in the whole impeachment process of immigrant children held in cages, massive attacks on the environment, huge cuts in food stamps, the seven U.S. wars currently underway, the viciously anti-people sanctions on Cuba, Iran, Venezuela, North Korea and many other countries.  By Richard Becker Federal Study on Racial Biases in Facial Recognition Technology Confirms Warnings of Civil Liberties Groups African American and Asian American men were misidentified 100 times as often as white men. The U.S. government’s first major federal study of facial recognition surveillance, released Thursday, shows the technology’s extreme racial and gender biases, confirming what privacy and civil rights groups have warned about for years. In a study of 189 algorithms used by law enforcement agencies to match facial recognition images with names in state and federal databases, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) found that Asian American and African American men were misidentified 100 times as often as white men. By Julia ConleyEnvironment:

Week 152: Houston, You Might Have a Problem With Your Air. But We Can’t Be Sure. The Trump administration failed to monitor air pollution in the toxic aftermath of Hurricane Harvey. Also: Trump is taking a chainsaw to our protections, and the EPA can’t count to 20. By Brian Palmer

The Fracking Industry’s Methane Problem Is a Climate Problem While carbon dioxide — deservedly — gets a bad rap when it comes to climate change, about 40 percent of global warming actually can be attributed to the powerful greenhouse gas methane, according to the 2013 IPCC report. This makes addressing methane emissions critical to stopping additional warming, especially in the near future. Methane is shorter-lived in the atmosphere but 85 times more potent than carbon dioxide over a 20 year period. Atmospheric levels of methane stopped increasing around the year 2000 and at the time were expected to decrease in the future. However, they began increasing again in the last 10 years, spurring researchers to explore why. Robert Howarth, a biogeochemist at Cornell University, recently presented his latest research linking the increase in methane to fossil fuel production, with fracking for natural gas, which is mostly methane, likely a major source. By Justin Mikulka

CO2 and Climate Change, Old and NewHow long has science known about CO2-induced climate change, and are we clever enough today to geo-engineer our way out of cooking ourselves to extinction? — In brief: a long time, and most likely no. — Clive Thompson has written engagingly about the 19th century scientists — Joseph Fourier (1768-1830), Eunice Newton Foote (1819-1888), John Tyndall (1820-1893), Svante Arrhenius (1859-1927), Arvid Högbom (1857-1940), and Samuel Pierpont Langley (1834-1906) — whose work in aggregate pieced together the essential facts about CO2-induced global warming. [1] By Manuel García, Jr.

Civil Rights/Black Liberation: 

Exonerate the Innocent; Incarcerate the Guilty The U.S. “justice” system, first and foremost, protects police and prosecutors.  The Supreme Court has held that while cops have only limited immunity from lawsuits, prosecutors enjoy what’s known as absolute immunity for their conduct under most circumstances.  Only in the most extreme cases of abuse — including killings and with bodycam videos as evidence – do police get arrested and prosecuted.  Still less are prosecutors prosecuted for questionable, if not illegal, practices. Three innocent men — Alfred Chestnut, Ransom Watkins and Andrew Stewart – were recently fully exonerated and released from a Maryland prison after spending 36 years in jail for a murder they did not commit. On Thanksgiving, 1983, the-then teenagers were accused of killing a 14-year-old boy in the hallway of a Baltimore junior high school over his jacket.  The incident was part of what was then known in Baltimore as “clothing murders” because city youth were being attached over sneakers or sports apparel. When the now-grown men were released, Baltimore States’ Attorney Marilyn Mosby admitted, “These three men were convicted, as children, because of police and prosecutorial misconduct. What the state, my office, did to them is wrong. There is no way we can ever repair the damage done to them. We can’t be scared of that and we must confront it.” By David Rosen

The Innocence Project provides the following alarming statistics as of 2018 exonerations based on DNA information:

  • 367 DNA exonerees to date;
  • 28 percent of those exonerated were convicted based on false confessions;
  • 37 states where exonerations have been won;
  • 14 is the average number of years served;
  • 5,097.5 years is the total of years served;
  • +  26.5 years is the average age at the time of wrongful conviction;
  • 21 of the 367 people exonerated served time on death row;
  • 41 of 367 people exonerated pled guilty to crimes they did not commit.

Black Agenda Radio for Week of December 23, 2019 With Nellie Bailey And Glen Ford

  • BAR Co-Founder Book Exposes “Sham” of US Democracy: Democrats Largely Silent on Bolivia Coup / McCarthy Era Laid Groundwork for Sixties Repression / The US has failed in its purported mission to forge a society based on human equality, said Margaret Kimberley, co-founder of Black Agenda Report and author of the new book, “Prejudential: Black America and the Presidents.” “The experiment is done,” said Kimberley, whose book will be released in February by Steerborth Press. “This country is true to its roots of settler colonialism, conquest and enslavement,” she said
  • Democrats Largely Silent on Bolivia Coup: “We’ve seen very little pushback from the Democratic Party” to the military coup that deposed Evo Morales’ Native American government, said Jake Johnston, of the Center for Economic and Policy Research, in Washington. Johnston said US law prohibits assistance to coup governments. He wrote a report detailing how the Organization of American States was wrong in claiming that the election won by Morales was flawed.
  • McCarthy Era Laid Groundwork for Sixties Repression:Charisse Burden Stelly, professor of Africana Studies and Political Science at Carleton College, said the long US history of red-b


Half of the jobs in America currently pay less than $18 an hour, according to Labor Department data. That’s about $37,000 a year if someone works full-time. Forty percent of jobs in the country pay less than $15.50, according to the left-leaning Economic Policy Institute. There’s always debate about what constitutes a “good-paying job,” but it’s notable that manufacturing jobs, which President Trump campaigned on bringing back, pay over $20.50 an hour, on average. — Half the jobs in America pay less than $18 an hour. Can Trump help?

Over 1,500 Steelworkers To Lose Their Jobs As US Steel Announces Idling Of Great Lakes Works Outside Of Detroit US Steel announced Friday, just days before the Christmas holiday, that it is issuing layoff notices to 1,545 workers at its Great Lakes Works facility south of Detroit. Next year it will idle most of the mill and shift production to Gary Works in Gary, Indiana, pitting workers in the same region against one another for a dwindling supply of jobs.Company spokesmen told the Northwest Indiana Times that US Steel’s goal is to make the remaining jobs “more secure and sustainable” and “help the company reach its goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 20 percent by 2030.” In other words, the new jobs will likely pay lower wages with fewer benefits. By Jessica Goldstein



Cuba To Spend Over Half Of Its Budget To Social Programs In 2020 The projected budget for 2020 in Cuba, approved this Friday in the ordinary session of the 9th Legislature of the National Assembly of People´s Power, has a strong social character, prioritizing, with more than 50 percent of the resources, basic services and the implementation of approved social policies such as salary increases and pensions, Meisi Bolaños, Minister of Finance and Prices, assured. Bolaños informed the Cuban legislators that 8.6 billion pesos will be allocated to ensure the salary increase that began in July this year, and that 52 percent of the budget will be  used for education and health services.Whither Corbynism? The recent UK election represented a massive set-back for the Labour Party and Jeremy Corbyn. What this defeat proves is that socialism will not be achieved through electoralism and we need true, radical solutions to the pressing issues of our day. No politician, no election, and no one fight defines the struggle for socialism. It is an international project and one that cannot be accomplished or defeated in a single moment.Exclusive: Canada Police Prepared To Shoot Indigenous Activists, Documents Show Notes from strategy session for raid on Wet’suwet’en nation’s ancestral lands show commanders argued for ‘lethal overwatch’ Canadian police were prepared to shoot Indigenous land defenders blockading construction of a natural gas pipeline in northern British Columbia, according to documents seen by the Guardian. Notes from a strategy session for a militarized raid on ancestral lands of the Wet’suwet’en nation show that commanders of Canada’s national police force, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), argued that “lethal overwatch is req’d” – a term for deploying snipers. By Jaskiran Dhillon and Will Parrish

Sabina Dennis stands her ground as police dismantle the barricade to enforce the injunction filed by Coastal Gaslink pipeline at the Gidimt’en checkpoint near Houston, British Columbia, on 7 January. Photograph: Amber Bracken

Education, Health, Science, 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 ‘governn’, 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