Daily News Digest March 27, 2018

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  Who Profit From Austerity! Under Austerity, All of the World Will Eventually Be Pauperized, Humbled, and Desecrated Like Greece and Puerto Rico

Daily News Digest March 27, 2018

Image of the Day:

The Lords of War Quotes of the Day:

The enormous “dead zone” in the Gulf of Mexico will take decades to recover even if the flow of farming chemicals that is causing the damage is completely halted, new research has warned. Intensive agriculture near the Mississippi has led to fertilizers leeching into the river, and ultimately the Gulf of Mexico, via soils and waterways. This has resulted in a huge oxygen-deprived dead zone in the Gulf that is now at its largest ever extent, covering an area greater than the state of New Jersey. A new study has found that even if runoff of nitrogen, a fertilizer chemical, was fully stemmed, the Gulf would take about 30 years to recover. Even this scenario is “not only considered unrealistic, but also inherently unsustainable”, researchers stated in the work, published in Science. “We have been building up nitrogen for the past 50 years and it will take time to go through the system,” said Nandita Basu, associate professor of environmental sciences at Canada’s University of Waterloo and the study co-author. “Money is being spent on the landscape in an ad hoc way. We need to focus better. If we make the right changes it will have an impact, it’s just that it’ll take a few decades. It’s like when you go on a diet – you can’t expect results right away.” The ailing Gulf of Mexico is emblematic of a global suffocation of the oceans caused by modern agriculture, sewage and climate change, which is causing waters to warm and hold less oxygen. At least 500 sites experiencing hypoxia, or oxygen deprivation, have been reported near coasts worldwide, up from just 50 in 1950. The true number may, in fact, be much higher, experts believe. Fertilizers spilling into the oceans promote the growth of algae, which can trigger toxic blooms harmful to fish, shellfish, marine mammals and birds. These outbreaks can discolour water and befoul beaches. It also depletes oxygen in the water, leading to further damage to marine creatures and dwindling supplies for the people who rely upon them for food. — ‘Dead zone’ in Gulf of Mexico will take decades to recover from farm pollution

The crazed neoconservatives, such as Trump’s National Security Adviser John Bolton, think that Russia will buckle under the strains, sue for peace, and accept US hegemony. If this assumption is incorrect, the outcome of Washington’s hostile actions against Russia is likely to be nuclear war. The side that Stephen Lendman and I are talking is neither the side of Washington nor Russia, but the side of humanity and all life against nuclear war.  How the Russian government could ignore the clearly stated US hegemony in the 1992 Wolfowitz Doctrine is a mystery. The Wolfowitz doctrine states  that the US’s primary goal is “to prevent the re-emergence of a new rival, either on the territory of the former Soviet Union or elsewhere, that poses a threat on the order of that posed formerly by the Soviet Union.” The doctrine stresses that “this is a dominant consideration underlying the new regional defense strategy and requires that we endeavor to prevent any hostile power from dominating a region whose resources would, under consolidated control, be sufficient to general global power.” In the Middle East and Southwest Asia, Washington’s “overall objective is to remain the predominant outside power in the region and preserve US and Western access to the region’s oil.” The doctrine also states that the US will act to restrain India’s alleged “hegemonic aspirations” in South Asia, and warns of potential conflicts requiring military intervention with Cuba and China. By “threat” Wolfowitz does not mean a military threat.  By “threat” he means a multi-polar world that constrains Washington’s unilateralism. The doctrine states that the US will permit no alternative to US unilateralism. The doctrine is a statement that Washington intends hegemony over the entire world.  There has been no repudiation of this doctrine.  Indeed, we see its implementation in the long list of false accusations and demonizations of Russia and her leader and in the false charges against Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Somalia, Yemen, Venezuela, China, Iran, and North Korea. If Russia wants to be part of the West, Russia should realize that the price is the same loss of sovereignty that characterizes Washington’s European vassal states.  — Paul Craig Roberts

Video of the Day:

Puerto Rico’s New Fiscal Plan Will Cause Another ‘Lost Decade’ Six months after Hurricane Maria, Puerto Rico’s new fiscal plan – which supposedly takes the hurricane’s devastation into account – will demand citizens pay off debts they cannot possibly repay, leading to deeper economic decline, says CEPR co-director Mark Weisbrot


The United States’ Perpetual Wars for Exploitation of the World: US to Extract Minerals From Afghanistan to ‘Defray Cost of US Assistance’ The U.S. military has had its eyes on Afghan mineral deposits for some time. A 2007 Pentagon memo that the New York Times quoted in a 2010 article says that Afghanistan could be the “Saudi Arabia of lithium.” U.S. Companies are planning on taking a larger role in extracting Afghanistan’s enormous reserves of valuable rare earth minerals, Reuters reported after U.S. President Donald Trump met with his Afghan counterpart Ashraf Ghani on Thursday. According to a White House statement, the presidents agreed that the development of Afghan minerals by U.S. companies would “develop materials critical to national security,” as well as “defray some of the costs of United States assistance as Afghans become more self-reliant.” Afghanistan has some of the world’s largest un-extracted reserves of rare earth minerals valuable in electronic production, such as lithium, as well as gold and various gemstones. The U.S. Geological Survey estimates the total value at least US$1 trillion. by teleSUR

It goes with the story of Afghanistan Lithium, File, In this Sunday, Jan. 18, 2015 photo, Abdul Qadir Timor, director of archaeology at the Ministry of Information and Culture, left, looks at the view of Mes Aynak valley, some 40 kilometers (25 miles) southwest of Kabul, Afghanistan. (AP Photo/Rahmat Gul, file)

On Military Spending and Trade, Trump Puts Americans Last US president Donald Trump signed yet another massive government spending bill — $1.3 trillion — on March 23, after threatening a veto. Why did he threaten a veto? Because the bill doesn’t fund his cherished US-Mexico border wall idea, and because it doesn’t address the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program that he’s threatened to end absent a “fix.” Why did he sign it? For the military spending. Because, he says, “for the last eight years, deep defense cuts have undermined our national security,” and we just can’t have that. Deep cuts? In what universe? In every year since 2010, the US has spent more than half again as much on its military as in 2003 — two years into the Afghanistan war and the year that it invaded Iraq. Since 2010, the US has never spent as little on the military as it did in 2007, the year before Trump’s predecessor was elected by Thomas Knapp


Meat industry blamed for largest-ever ‘dead zone’ in Gulf of Mexico  A new report shows toxins from suppliers to companies like Tyson Foods are pouring into waterways, causing marine life to leave or die The global meat industry, already implicated in driving global warming and deforestation, has now been blamed for fueling what is expected to be the worst “dead zone” on record in the Gulf of Mexico. The global meat industry, already implicated in driving global warming and deforestation, has now been blamed for fueling what is expected to be the worst “dead zone” on record in the Gulf of Mexico. Toxins from manure and fertiliser pouring into waterways are exacerbating huge, harmful algal blooms that create oxygen-deprived stretches of the gulf, the Great Lakes and Chesapeake Bay, according to a new report by Mighty, an environmental group chaired by former congressman Henry Waxman. It is expected that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (Noaa) will this week announce the largest ever recorded dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico. It is expected to be larger than the nearly 8,200 square-mile area that was forecast for July – an expanse of water roughly the size of New Jersey. By Oliver Milman

.Ongoing Big Energy Crisis:

Civil Rights/ Black Liberation:


Economy:“Masking”: A Mass Conspiracy Inside Merrill Lynch At last we know why the New York State Attorney General’s office has decided to sideline the Securities and Exchange Commission and U.S. Department of Justice and become the self-appointed watchdog over Wall Street’s Dark Pools: it’s helping its hometown industry by doling out tiny fines and never digging too deep. This past Friday’s fine against Merrill Lynch’s Dark Pool marks the fourth time since 2014 that the office of New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has leveled a meaningless fine of less than $50 million against the Dark Pools of Wall Street’s mega banks that are making billions of dollars in profits each year through what Senator Bernie Sanders calls a “business model of fraud.” (Schneiderman’s office brought earlier charges against Barclays, Credit Suisse and Deutsche Bank.) By Pam Martens and Russ Martens


Mass response as Spanish state steps up Catalonia repression and arrests Puigdemont The arrest of Carles Puigdemont in Germany on Sunday morning was an escalation of a strategy of repression against those who dared call an independence referendum in Catalonia on 1 October. On Friday, five other politicians were jailed and another went into exile. These moves were met with a surge of anger from below, with mass demonstrations and road blockades on Friday and Sunday. Tens-of-thousands in the streets had two main slogans: “General strike” and “Parliament should decide who’s president”. By Jorge Martin

Health, Science, Education, and Welfare:

Rethinking the Parkland Uprising in the Age of Mass Violence Under the regime of Donald Trump, the role of education in producing the formative cultures in and out of schools necessary to support critical thinking, civic courage, and critically engaged citizens appears to be disappearing. Words that speak to the truth and hold power accountable are in retreat as lies become normalized and the relationship between the truth and the citizen is treated either with disdain or simply ignored. The democratization of information has given way to the democratization of disinformation as disimagination machines proliferate and corporate controlled cultural apparatuses colonize the media and political landscapes. One consequence is that historical memory is not only vanishing in a culture of immediacy, sensationalism, and “fake news,” it is also being rewritten in school textbooks so as to eliminate dangerous memories and align the past with narratives that reinforce anti-democratic ideologies and social relations.[1] In the current historical moment, memory has no place in the dark cave of civic depravity—a space where freedom is abandoned in an educational ecosystem where nothing is true, and the basis for criticizing power collapses under the spectacle of presidential bomb throwing-like tweets, endless spectacles of diversion, and high-level stretches of newspeak illiteracy. by Henry Giroux

Review: Humanity: The World Before Religion, War, and Inequality In his groundbreaking work, Humanity: The World Before Religion, War, and Inequality, author Barry Brown has managed to definitively prove humankind’s natural tendencies to be peaceful, cooperative, and egalitarian. Brown’s work is the first ever to document the history of humankind before and after the advent of warfare. Barry takes the reader on a tour de force through humanity’s prehistory as well as providing detailed evidence for his assertions about ancient mysteries such as the Venus statues, the original meaning of the swastika, his theory about the location of the Garden of Eden, and the real purpose of the Gobekli Tepe site, an enigmatic archaeological site in southeast Turkey. by William Hawes