Daily News Digest February 13, 2020

Daily News Digest Archives 

Laura Gray’s cartoon from the 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 Scapegoat Blacks, Minorities, and ‘Illegal’ Immigrants for Unemployment, and 3.  The Iron Heel   Always Remember:  That President Obama, With a Majority Democrat Legislature Supported the Wall Street Bailout and Remember, That he 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 , thet the 99% Will Rule, Not the Few!

Image of the Day:

The USA Is Nothing More Than An Oil Company With An Army

The City Of Dresden Lies In Ruins After The Allied Campaign On 13-15 February 1945Quote of the Day:

The Dresden atrocity, tremendously expensive and meticulously planned, was so meaningless, finally, that only one person on the entire planet got any benefit from it. I am that person. I wrote this book, which earned a lot of money for me and made my reputation, such as it is. One way or another, I got two or three dollars for every person killed. Some business I’m in.”  — Kurt Vonnegut Jr.

Videos of the Day:

United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture on the Julian Assange Case


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.

World War III Could Be Fought in the Arctic In early March, an estimated 7,500 American combat troops will travel to Norway to join thousands of soldiers from other NATO countries in a massive mock battle with imagined invading forces from Russia. In this futuristic simulated engagement — it goes by the name of Exercise Cold Response 2020 — allied forces will “conduct multinational joint exercises with a high-intensity combat scenario in demanding winter conditions,” or so claims the Norwegian military anyway. At first glance, this may look like any other NATO training exercise, but think again. There’s nothing ordinary about Cold Response 2020. As a start, it’s being staged above the Arctic Circle, far from any previous traditional NATO battlefield, and it raises to a new level the possibility of a great-power conflict that might end in a nuclear exchange and mutual annihilation. Welcome, in other words, to World War III’s newest battlefield. By Michael Klare‘Language of Monarchy’: Trump Asserts He Has ‘Absolute Right’ to Tell Justice Department What to Do  “Barr has made clear that, first and foremost, he serves President Donald Trump’s personal and political interests and not the interests of the United States.” —Karen Hobert Flynn, Common Cause  “Presidents and attorneys general cannot put their thumbs on the scales of justice for any reason—including to aid friends associates—or we cease to be a nation of laws.” By Jake Johnson

Trump Budget Gives Top Priority to New Generation of Nuclear Weapons The most ominous feature of the new budget document issued Monday by the Trump administration is the prominent place given to the development of a new generation of nuclear weapons, including so-called low-yield weapons, smaller than the bombs that destroyed Hiroshima and Nagasaki, which are widely regarded as more likely to actually be used in combat. By Patrick Martin


Trump ‘Turns Back The Clock’ by Luring Drilling Companies to Pristine Landsn Energy companies have leased 9.9m acres from the administration – and the fossil fuels extracted could equal half a year of emissions from China The Trump administration has offered oil companies a chunk of the American west that’s four times the size of California – an expansive drilling plan that threatens to entrench the industry at the expense of other outdoor jobs, while locking in enough emissions to undermine global climate policy. Energy companies have leased 9.9m acres from the unprecedented 461m acres put up for rent by the Trump administration, according to a new analysis from the Wilderness Society.

Profit Versus Life: Blue Acceleration: Capitalism’s Growing Assault on the Oceans “A new phase in humanity’s relationship with the biosphere, where the ocean is not only crucial but is being fundamentally changed”  Capitalism’s inherent drive to expand went into overdrive in the mid-20th century. Long-term socioeconomic and Earth System trends, graphed fifteen years ago and updated in 2015, show nearly simultaneous hockey stick upturns in about 1950. Called the Great Acceleration, the speed-up is driving what Earth System scientists describe as “the most rapid transformation of the human relationship with the natural world in the history of humankind.”[1] It marks the beginning of a new historical and geological epoch, e Anthropocene — a time when “human activities have become so pervasive and profound that they rival the great forces of nature and are pushing the Earth into planetary terra incognita.”[2] By Ian Angus

Deep-Sea Mining Companies Plan to Use Immense Remote-Controlled Machines to Scrape the Sea Bed, Capture Minerals, and Dump The Leftover Sludge. The Process Will Kill Uncountable Organisms in and Beyond the Mining Zones.

Largest Maker Of Pesticide Linked To Brain Damage In Kids To Stop Producing Chemical Announcement comes after Trump administration reversed plans to ban chlorpyrifos and rejected scientific conclusions of experts The world’s largest manufacturer of chlorpyrifos, an agricultural pesticidelinked to brain damage in children, has announced that it will stop producing the chemical by the end of the year.The announcement on Thursday by Corteva, the corporation formed from a Dow Chemical and DuPont merger, comes after the Trump administration reversed regulatory plans to ban the pesticide and rejected the scientific conclusions of US government experts.Chlorpyrifos has been widely used on corn, soybeans, almonds, citrus, cotton, grapes, walnuts and other crops, but research has repeatedly found serious health effects in children, including impaired brain development. Environmental groups have long advocated for its ban, and the state of California, which grows the majority of the nation’s fruits and nuts, defied Trump and banned the chemical last year. By Sam Levin

Civil Rights/ Black Liberation:Black Agenda Report February 12, 2020

Free All Political Prisoners –- Including Julian Assange and Chelsea Manning Julian Assange and his protégés have made common cause with Black revolutionaries in their zeal to lay bare the dictatorial nature of the omni-pervasive national security state and the sheer, racist barbarity of the U.S. imperial project. “A huge struggle must be launched to claim the means human expression.” All of our fates are entwined with that of Julian Assange, a political prisoner of the global imperial state. Assange, an Australian currently held in solitary confinement in Britain’s Belmarsh prison, faces 175 years behind bars if extradited to the United States, the imperial power whose international crimes and domestic machinations have been severely compromised by Wikileaks, the journalism operation Assange founded. By Glen Ford, BAR executive editor

Chuck Sims Africa Freed: Final Jailed Move 9 Member Released From Prison The last of Philadelphia’s most besieged, and heroic, Black political families is released, after a 42-year ordeal. “Now 59, he has been in custody since shortly after he urned 18.” One of the great open wounds of the black liberation struggle of the 1970s has finally been healed with the release of the last member of the Move 9, the group of radicals rounded up in a Philadelphia police siege in 1978 and held behind bars for more than four decades. By Ed PilkingtonFreedom Rider: Trump Has No Opposition The Bloomberg cash onslaught and the anti-Bernie conspiracy have laid bare the degree of collusion among the rulers. “The blatant war crimes committed against Venezuela elicit either nonchalance or outright support from the so-called resistance.” The Democratic Party is every bit as corrupt as its pretend rival, the Republican Party. The theatrics of phony opposition have been on full display in recent days but no one should be fooled by the cheap theatrics. The impeachment show, Iowa caucuses, and State of the Union address all put a spotlight on the fraud of democracy in this country.  By Margaret Kimberley, BAR senior columnist

Kobe, Impeachment and the Coronavirus: A Study on the Dangers of White Liberal Fragility White liberalism is not a kinder, gentler form of white supremacy, or a lesser evil to the more explicit racism of Trump and his base. “Racist panic over the disease has been stoked by the entire ruling class, with a special role being played by the so-called ‘liberal’ corporate media.” By  Danny Haiphong, BAR Contributing EditorLives Over Luxury: The Poor People’s Army Plans to March on the DNC   By Prison Reform and the State: The Impending Confrontation The founder of the Poor People’s Economic Human Rights Campaign invites everyone to join them in a march against the DNC if it steals the presidential nomination. “We are setting up a Trumpville in Martin Luther King Jr. Park in Milwaukee.” The Democratic National Convention will convene in Milwaukee from July 13 to 16, and the Poor People’s Economic Human Rights Campaign (PPEHRC) plans to be there. I spoke to PPEHRC founder and organizer Cheri Honkala of Philadelphia. By Ann Garrison, BAR Contributing EditorAmerican Bottom One of the poorest towns in the nation, nearly all-Black Centreville, Illinois, floods with raw sewage every time it rains. “It’s like Mississippi in the 1930s.” South of East St. Louis, down in the broad flood plain of the Mississippi known as the American Bottom, there is a little town that is gradually sinking in a flood of human waste. There is just no other way to say it, no other way to begin to tell the story of Centreville, Illinois. If you drove through quickly and did not look very carefully, it might look like any other rural town in this part of the Midwest. Gravel roads lined by storm-torn trees, large lots, small one-story houses, bread-box shaped mailboxes with small red flags out at the ends of driveways. But there are signs of the floods everywhere: abandoned houses surrounded by swampy yards, drainage ditches filled with brackish water, little wads of toilet paper hanging waist-high from the bushes by the side of the road. By Walter Johnson

Prison Reform and the State: The Impending Confrontation The recent prison reform rallies at the Mississippi Capitol were more akin to being for a Middle Passage with more efficient plumbing.“The prison systems intentionally subordinates and degrades.” The prison-reform rallies held at the Mississippi Capitol on Jan. 24 and Feb. 1, 2020, at the Governor’s Mansion are evidence that dubious government-approved rallies don’t just happen in “communist” countries. Neither were these rallies like older gatherings where white folks took picture postcards in front of hanging and smoldering black bodies with the aid of the redneck sheriff. By Adofo Minka

Colombian Government Obstructs the Peace Agreement with the FARC Guerrilla Group BAR’s reporter in Colombia explores how the US-backed regime is grossly violating the peace agreement with former FARC guerillas.  Translated by María Angélica Martínez“Ninety percent of the prisoners’ requests to apply the amnesty law have been denied.”As incredible as it may seem, the ultimate manifestation of sabotage by both the current and former governments of the peace process, 451 former FARC ex-combatants out of a total of 3,041 reported at the time of the Final Peace Agreement, remain in prison. Official delays and precariousness in institutional articulation are part of the answers for a reality that only explains the absence of political will in the high government.By  Sebastián Navarrete Aldana How to Yellow-Cake a Tragedy: The New York Times Spreads the Virus of Hatred, Again The US corporate media, especially the Times, has turned a medical emergency into a racist campaign of ideological propaganda. “The New York Times has been avidly red-baiting.”“In the end, the plague touched us all…it was not confined….breeding in a compost of greed and uselessness and murder…promising life and delivering death…[serving] as furnished rooms for ideology.”—Peter Hamill, Liner notes to “Blood on the Tracks” By K.J. Noh Keep War, Environmental Degradation and Profit Out of Space   The US is escalating the arms race because it sees its hegemonic military and economic power weakening. “This will be the most expensive arms race in history.” The 21st Century nuclear arms and developing outer space arms races, which began under Obama and are increasing under Trump, are going to be something the world has never seen before. They are a bonanza for weapons makers, the Pentagon budget and capitalists in space. They will create a less secure world, a greater wealth divide, a tattered safety net and new, more dangerous forms of war. By Kevin Zeese and Margaret Flowers

The Democratic Party’s Theatrical Performances: Fooling Black Voters for Decades The Democrats are terrible at passing legislation that helps Black and poor people but fantastically talented at political theater. “The difference is that Republicans don’t pretend to be anything but white supremacists.” It is the time of the year in which the white-dominated, and historically white-biased, United States’ film industry doles out awards. The Democratic Party should win an Academy Award each year for the outstanding job they do in convincing Black voters that they care about their plight. The Democratic establishment is riddled with fraudulent “snake-oil” politicians hellbent on extending their careers. It is a political party that unapologetically champions imperialist war after war. The Party is no more a peacemaker than their Republican Party counterparts.  The Democrats are terrible at passing legislation that helps Black and poor people but fantastically talented at political theater.  “The difference is that Republicans don’t pretend to be anything but white supremacists.”It is the time of the year in which the white-dominated, and historically white-biased, United States’ film industry doles out awards. The Democratic Party should win an Academy Award each year for the outstanding job they do in convincing Black voters that they care about their plight. The Democratic establishment is riddled with fraudulent “snake-oil” politicians hellbent on extending their careers. It is a political party that unapologetically champions imperialist war after war. The Party is no more a peacemaker than their Republican Party counterparts. By Solomon ComissiongLabor:

$93.6 Million Verdict Threatens to Bankrupt One of America’s Most Powerful Unions What started as a dispute over two jobs in Portland, Ore., escalated to a jury verdict that could devastate the storied International Longshore and Warehouse Union. For decades, the International Longshore and Warehouse Union has solidified its power with aggressive demonstrations of solidarity across its Pacific ports. That includes a series of actions beginning in 2012, when dockworkers in Portland, Ore., introduced a slowdown, at least in part to protest two positions they believed should be going to the union’s members. The company operating the port went to court, contending that the job actions that continued for years were illegal and financially destructive. Seven years later, a federal jury has agreed, awarding the company a stunning $93.6 million judgment. By By Mike BakerThe Survival of the ILWU at Stake! Coastwide Port Action Can Stop Union Busting! Labor Solidarity Must Prevail A recent federal court decision in Portland, Oregon poses an immediate existential threat to the strongest union in the U.S. today, the ILWU, and ultimately to the labor movement as a whole. The International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU), arguably one of the most militant unions in the U.S., has been hit with a union-busting $93.6 million dollar court-imposed fine for a secondary boycott deemed illegal under the 1947 Taft-Hartley Act. The plaintiff, International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI) is owned by the third richest man in the Philippines, billionaire Enrique Razon Jr. and operates in 27 ports worldwide, mainly in poor, developing countries.The maritime company claims it was run out of business in Portland because of a secondary boycott by the longshore union during a long-running dispute over two mechanics jobs which are presently done by another union, the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW). ICTSI argues the primary employer is the Port of Portland which hires the mechanics, so they claim the longshore union organized an “illegal” secondary boycott. For the ILWU’s part, it was a foolish top down campaign organized by the dubious Leal Sundet, then, an ILWU Coast Committeeman who had previously been an Oregon area executive for the employers group, the Pacific Maritime Association (PMA). By Jack Heyman



Brazil: 20,000 Oil Workers on Strike to Halt Privatization Plan Workers perceive the increasing deterioration of Petrobras since Bolsonaro became president in 2019. Over 20,000 workers of the Brazilian state-controlled company Petrobras are carrying out a national strike in protest against the dismissal of workers and the privatization of public assets.Shockwave Being Prepared as Tory Promises Turn to Dust The result of the last general election was an expression of the deep anger in society. The Tories will quickly find themselves unable to quell this anger as they continue to carry out cuts, laying the basis for major upheavals. “Is it just me or is it getting crazier out there?” “It is certainly tense. People are upset. People are struggling looking for work. These are tough times,” replied the social worker. Although these lines come from the script of the film Joker, in many ways they are all too close to real life. These words reflect the current reality – not only in the United States, but in Britain too. By Rob Sewell

Health, Science, 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 ‘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!