Daily News Digest April 3, 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 April 3, 2018

 Images of the Day:

Book Review: ‘Why the U.S. Government Assassinated Malcolm X and Martin Luther King Jr.’ Review by Roger Hollander of the book by Roland Sheppard, just published by ReMarx PublishingParks and Wreck Quotes of the Day:

The U.S. government assassinated Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr. because they rightly came to understand and challenge the capitalist economic system, its social impact – war, poverty, injustice, environmental disaster – and its reliance on racism to divide and conquer.Sheppard concludes with an appeal to action; we must learn the truth about Malcolm X and Martin Luther King Jr. so we can carry their vision forward and conclude the struggle they so bravely began. Roland Sheppard describes himself as a retired business representative of Painters Local 4 in San Francisco, a lifelong social activist and socialist. Prior to being elected as a union official in 1994, he worked for 31 years as a house painter. Roland Sheppard’s Daily News is accessible at https://rolandsheppard.com/. — Book Review: ‘Why the U.S. Government Assassinated Malcolm X and Martin Luther King Jr.’ Review by Roger Hollander of the book by Roland Sheppard, just published by ReMarx Publishing

We should stop going around babbling about how we’re the greatest democracy on earth, when we’re not even a democracy. We are a sort of militarised republic. — Gore Vidal

Videos of the Day:

Israeli Military Admits Massacre of Unarmed Gaza Protesters Was Intentional – then Deletes Tweets  The IDF said its bloody crackdown on unarmed Palestinian protesters was “accurate and measured.” After shooting 773 Gazans with live ammunition, it wrote on Twitter, “we know where every bullet landed.”

Israel Massacres Unarmed Gaza Protesters, Shooting 773 with Live Ammunition The Israeli military brutally crushed a protest on the Gaza border led by tens of thousands of Palestinians, killing 16 and injuring 1,400. Journalist Max Blumenthal speaks of Israel’s suffocating blockade of the strip and the biased media reporting on the “Great Return March.”


The Isolation of Julian Assange Must Stop We call on the government of Ecuador to allow Julian Assange his right of freedom of speech. If it was ever clear that the case of Julian Assange was never just a legal case, but a struggle for the protection of basic human rights, it is now.Citing his critical tweets about the recent detention of Catalan president Carles Puidgemont in Germany, and following pressure from the US, Spanish and UK governments, the Ecuadorian government has installed an electronic jammer to stop Assange communicating with the outside world via the internet and phone. As if ensuring his total isolation, the Ecuadorian government is also refusing to allow him to receive visitors. Despite two UN rulings describing his detention as unlawful and mandating his immediate release, Assange has been effectively imprisoned since he was first placed in isolation in Wandsworth prison in London in December 2010. He has never been charged with a crime. The Swedish case against him collapsed and was withdrawn, while the United States has stepped up efforts to prosecute him. His only “crime” is that of a true journalist — telling the world the truths that people have a right to know. by Noam Chomsky, Chris Hedges, John PIlger, etal

The Ignorant and the Arrogant: How Pompeo and Bolton Bring Us Closer to War in the Middle East Armed conflict between the US and Iran is becoming more probable by the day as super-hawks replace hawks in the Trump administration. The new National Security Adviser, John Bolton, has called for the US to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal of 2015 and advocated immediate regime change in Tehran. The new Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, has said the agreement, which Trump may withdraw from on 12 May, is “a disaster”. Trump has told Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that he will not accept a deal with “cosmetic changes” as advocated by European states, according to Israeli reporters. If this is so, then the deal is effectively dead. by Patrick Cockburn

Weapons for Anyone: Donald Trump and the Art of the Arms Deal It’s one of those stories of the century that somehow never gets treated that way. For an astounding 25 of the past 26 years, the United States has been the leading arms dealer on the planet, at some moments in near monopolistic fashion. Its major weapons-producers, including Boeing, Raytheon, and Lockheed Martin, regularly pour the latest in high-tech arms and munitions into the most explosive areas of the planet with ampl eassistance from the Pentagon. In recent years, the bulk of those arms have gone to the Greater Middle East. Donald Trump is only the latest American president to preside over a global arms sales bonanza. With remarkable enthusiasm, he’s appointed himself America’s number one weapons salesman and he couldn’t be prouder of the job he’s doing. by William HartungEnvironment:

The Sahara Desert is Expanding, According to New UMD Study The Sahara Desert has expanded by about 10 percent since 1920, according to a new study by University of Maryland scientists. The research is the first to assess century-scale changes to the boundaries of the world’s largest desert and suggests that other deserts could be expanding as well. The study was published online March 29, 2018, in the Journal of Climate.Ongoing Big Energy Crisis:

A Death in Louisiana’s Cancer Alley Reinforces a Small Town’s Fears of Industry Impacts Sixty-year-old Keith Hunter lived in St. James, Louisiana, for roughly 27 years, and during that time, he watched as the sugarcane farms gave way to oil storage tanks and as a railroad terminal was being built down the road, all visible from his front yard. Hunter was an outspoken critic of the industrialization of his neighborhood. And in a similar fashion as some of his neighbors, Hunter died on February 10 following a respiratory illness. The town of St. James lies in St. James Parish, about 50 miles west of New Orleans. Despite its location along a stretch of Mississippi River between New Orleans and Baton Rouge known as both the “Petrochemical Corridor” and “Cancer Alley,” St. James remained partially rural until fairly recently. By Julie DermanskyFukushima Jitters Fukushima is full of nasty surprises, similar to John Carpenter’s classic film The Thing (1982), which held audiences to the edge of their seats in anticipation of creepy monsters leaping out from “somebody, anybody, nobody knows for sure,” but unlike Hollywood films, Fukushima’s consequences are real and dire and deathly. It’s an on-going horror show that just won’t quit. Only recently, a team of international researchers, including a group of scientists from the University of Manchester/UK and Kyushu University/Japan made a startling discovery. Within the nuclear exclusion zone in paddy soils and at an aquaculture center located several miles from the nuclear plant, the research team found cesium-rich micro-particles. by Robert Hunziker‘Stuff of Nightmares’: Viral Video Shows Sinclair Forcing Local TV Anchors to Recite Trumpian Propaganda “It sickens me the way this company is encroaching upon trusted news brands in rural markets,” said one local reporter.  Journalists and corporate watchdogs reacted with alarm when it was reported last month that the right-wing media giant Sinclair Broadcast Group was planning to force local news anchors to read from a script denouncing “fake” and “false” news stories in a distinctly Trumpian fashion. By Jake Johnson, staff writerMapped: Cambridge Analytica’s Ties to the Fossil Fuel Industry Revelations continue to emerge about Cambridge Analytica, a political consultancy that has found itself embroiled in a scandal around data privacy and electoral manipulation. Three whistleblowers have gone public in the Guardian and Observer to outline how Cambridge Analytica used Facebook data to influence the outcomes of the US presidential election and Brexit referendum. DeSmog UK has previously mapped how the company ties to climate science denial through its Brexit and Trump connections. Now, Nafeez Ahmed over at Motherboard has outlined how Cambridge Analytica has ties to the fossil fuel industry. Based on that research, it’s only a few steps between the company and some of the world’s biggest coal and oil companies, many of which have had a revival since the election of Donald Trump. It’s only a couple more steps to tie those connections to the already well-established web of power lobbying for Brexit. Here’s an interactive map of how Cambridge Analytica has links to the fossil fuel industry: By Mat HopeCivil Rights/ Black Liberation:


 Economy: Are the Big Banks Putting a Gun to the Head of the U.S. Consumer – Again? Last Thursday, President Trump told a union crowd in Ohio that the U.S. is enjoying “the greatest economy we have ever had.” If that is so, why is Trump piling on more national debt to boost the economy through fiscal spending? The answer appears to rest in the fact that much of the economic growth in the United States is being financed by consumer debt. The serious threat to that economic growth is that interest rates are rising on big chunks of that consumer debt with virtually no restraints on what the mega Wall Street banks can charge to struggling Americans. By Pam Martens and Russ Martens


China retaliates against Trump tariffs with levy on US food imports Responding to US president’s tariffs on steel and aluminium, China targets 120 US products including a 25% tariff on frozen pork China has implemented retaliatory tariffs of up to 25% on $3bn in food imports from the US, raising uncertainty over the possibility of a trade war between the two countries. China’s ministry of commerce said it would be “suspending tariff concessions” on 120 US food products. Fresh and dried fruits, almonds, pistachios and wine would be subject to an additional 15% tariff. Eight other items, including frozen pork, would be subject to a 25% tariff. The tariffs would begin on Monday, the ministry said. By Lily Kuo

Health, Science, Education, and Welfare: