Daily News Digest February 20, 201

Daily News Digest Archives

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!

Daily News Digest February 20, 2017

Images of the Day:

‘Alternative Information’Behind Dropping of Sanctions Against Russia: Exxon and Russia’s Oil Company Deal Quotes of the Day:

 To wrap up, the DEA has deftly avoided accepting any culpability for this opioid crisis. For instance, the DEA Chief, Chuck Rosenberg, made an appearance last year on CBS This Morning. He was asked why his agency hasn’t significantly cut back the production quota for prescription opiates. Rosenberg replied that had the DEA had reduced the limits that year, but he didn’t mention the specifics. The production limit for oxycodone was reduced in 2016 to 108 tons, which is a 1300% increase from 20 years earlier. Rosenberg also essentially sidestepped the question by stating, “We don’t regulate the practice of medicine.” He added that our country needs to reduce the demand through education and rehab. Indeed, the latter part is accurate as drug addiction needs to be addressed as a public health issue. However, that doesn’t mean that the DEA should be let off the hook for their gross negligence of regulatory duties. These stories provide more examples from the drug war that illustrate the deficiencies of our government. Powerful corporations will continue to be held unaccountable, contrary to public interest, until substantial reforms are made to campaign financing laws and new restrictions are put in place to close the revolving door. Keep these details in mind the next time that you read a story about a drug company that has been fined for criminal misconduct. And you can rest assured, there will be a next time. — Why Corporations are Too Big to Jail in the Drug War

Residents of Imperial County are predominantly Hispanic and average about half the California per capita income, according to U.S. census data. Due to the placement of highways and fossil fuel refineries, low-income communities of color throughout the nation are exposed to toxic pollutants at significantly higher levels than upper-income Whites, and the CCV air quality control project sought to involve the most affected people from the outset to address this disparity. Imperial Valley residents worked with researchers to select locations to set up the air monitors. The online tool, called Identifying Violations Affecting Neighborhoods (IVAN), was launched in September and allows residents to access air quality information from each monitor, which update every 5 minutes, easily report an environmental issue, and see others’ reports. —In California’s Imperial Valley, Residents Aren’t Waiting for Government to Track Pollution

In his May 29, 1964 speech, “Harlem ‘Hate Gang’ Scare”, given at the Militant Labor Forum in New York City , Malcolm X stated: . . . It’s impossible for a chicken to produce a duck egg… The system in this country cannot produce freedom for an Afro-American. It is impossible for this system, this economic system, this political system, period . . . . And if ever a chicken did produce a duck egg, I’m certain you would say it was certainly a revolutionary chicken.”  . . .

Videos of the Day:

Endless war explained Retired U.S. Army Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson breaks it down When will it stop?

IMF Lent to Greece Knowing It Could Never Pay Back Debt

As Opposition Mounts to Cash Bail in MD, Industry Wines and Dines


U.S. Imperial War Personified by Ron JacobsRoaming Charges: Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Flynn?  We find ourselves in the midst of a “newsgasm,” a kind of press orgy where the media spends 23 hours and 45 minutes a day obsessing on Flynn, while giving 2 minutes, maybe, to mass deportation raids or the fact that a chunk of ice the size of Manhattan just broke away from Antarctica. Yet even with all of that wall-to-wall coverage the meaning of the scandal remains elusive. Let’s summarize the story to date, with a cautionary note that almost all of the incriminating information comes from anonymous leaks by US intelligence sources hostile to both Trump and Flynn that were leaked to reporters who are slavishly tracking Trump’s trail of scandal, the surest path to career advancement. By Jeffrey St. Clair 

A Corporate Defender at Heart, Former SEC Mary Jo White Returns to Her Happy Place It’s her sixth trip through the revolving door between various government jobs and the Debevoise & Plimpton law firm. By David Dayen


Can the Climate Survive Adherence to War and Partisanship? by David Swanson In California’s Imperial Valley, Residents Aren’t Waiting for Government to Track Pollution For marginalized communities along the California-Mexico border, projects to gather and share scientific reports are crucial to holding agencies accountable. Each day, the drying Salton Sea and an increasingly busy border take their toll on the air quality of southern California’s parched Imperial Valley. Despite averaging only three inches of rain a year, this swath of desert spanning the Mexican border from the Colorado River to San Diego County is heavily dependent on agriculture, and for decades farmers have relied on the Salton Sea to drain their fields. Today, the valley air hangs with toxic dust and pollution, and the residents face the highest rate of hospitalization for asthma of any area in the state. By Paulina Phelps

Scientists have just detected a major change to the Earth’s oceans linked to a warming climate A large research synthesis, published in one of the world’s most influential scientific journals, has detected a decline in the amount of dissolved oxygen in oceans around the world — a long-predicted result of climate change that could have severe consequences for marine organisms if it continues. By Chris MooneyOngoing Big Energy Crisis:

Radiation levels at Fukushima are comparable to a nuclear explosion that doesn’t end. That’s one reason that TEPCO, the Tokyo Electric Power Co. that owns Fukushima, keeps trying to reassure the world that little or no radiation escapes from Fukushima. This is not true, radiation in large, mostly unmeasured or undocumented amounts pours into the Pacific Ocean all the time, without pause. One reason this release is out of control is because no one apparently knows just where the three melted reactor cores have gone. TEPCO says it thinks the melted cores have burned through the reactors’ inner containment vessels, but are still within the outer containment walls. They keep looking as best they can. — Fukushima Out of Control: Radiation Levels Significantly Higher than “Unimaginable”

Trump Administration Exempts Three CA Oil Fields From Water Protection Rule at Jerry Brown’s Request As soon as I heard on election night that Donald Trump was going to be the next President, I predicted on Twitter, Facebook and in conversations with friends that Governor Jerry Brown, in spite of his “green” image, would try to make a deal with Trump to build his legacy project, the environmentally destructive Delta Tunnels, and expand fracking and other oil drilling in California. by Dan Bacher

Dakota Access Owner Says Pipelines Safer Than Rail Yet Owns Rail Hub Connected to Pipeline By Steve Horn Black Liberation/ Civil Rights:

Civil Rights Commission cites “systemic racism” in its Flint water crisis report  The 135-page report cites “systemic racism” dating back more than a century as a contributing factor.  By Steve Carmody Black History:

Why the Government The Assassinated Malcolm X  And Martin Luther King Jr. By Roland Sheppard

. . . Civil Rights Struggle for the 21st Century

Unlike Malcolm X, who never got the opportunity to act upon his convictions, Martin Luther King was organizing a movement to obtain his stated goals when he was assassinated in Memphis. He was in Memphis to build “the coalition of an energized section of labor, Negroes, unemployed, and welfare recipients” in support of striking municipal garbage workers. If such a force had been launched, the whole power of the antiwar and civil rights movement in the 1960s could have transformed the labor movement and become “the source of power that reshapes economic relationships and ushers in a breakthrough to a new level of social reform.” Such a coalition, as King envisioned it thirty-three years ago, is needed today. The best tribute to Martin Luther King and Malcolm X would be to begin anew to build a movement based on the ideas and the concepts that they had developed at the time of their untimely deaths.

Unfortunately, the civil rights movement, after Martin Luther King and Malcolm X, subordinated independent mass struggle in the streets to electoral activity: to elect Democrats. Black Democratic politicians under the slogan: “vote for me and I’ll set you free,” began distributing “war on poverty” money to Black organizations. What W.E.B. DuBois called the “talented tenth” got government jobs and became comfortable. This whole process demobilized the civil rights movement of the Black masses, who were subsequently left behind.

Today, the bankruptcy of this policy has come home to roost upon all workers as pensions, wages, our standard of living, etc., are under attack and devalued by inflation. Blacks and other minorities especially have faced the brunt of these attacks. They are disproportionately among the ranks of the unemployed and the underemployed.

On the question of civil rights, conditions have reverted to the 60s for the Black masses and for Latinos. According to the Harvard Civil Rights Project www.civilrightsproject.harvard.edu/ the nation’s schools have become re-segregated along Black, Latino, and economic lines. Throughout this country, the inner cities are being gentrified as Blacks and the poor are forced out and scattered throughout the land. The action in response to Hurricane Katrina and the explosion of the immigrant rights movement; a reflection of the rise of the indigenous people of all of Latin America for their rights, bring hope for a better future and are just a hint of what’s to come.

As we make a balance sheet of the Civil Right’s Movement against the backdrop of the world and domestic situation at the opening of the 21st century, clearly Martin Luther King Jr.’s “Dream” is not possible under the “Nightmare” of capitalism. The modern-day tyranny of the multinationals and their beholden representatives in government is based on dividing working people worldwide on the basis of race, nationality, and gender. There is no way forward for Black and Latino workers, or even for their white counterparts, under capitalism. If the system of capitalism is based on the exploitation of Labor, and one of the foremost methods of capitalist exploitation of Labor is the weapon of racism, how can any lasting solution to this problem of humanity be achieved under capitalism? As Malcolm X said: “…. Racism is profitable, if it wasn’t profitable it wouldn’t exist.

At Frogmore, S.C. November 14, 1966, King echoed Malcolm X when he said in a speech in front of his staff:

You can’t talk about solving the economic problem of the Negro without talking about billions of dollars. You can’t talk about ending the slums without first saying profit must be taken out of slums. You’re really tampering and getting on dangerous ground because you are messing with folk then. You are messing with captains of industry…. Now this means that we are treading in difficult water, because it really means that we are saying that something is wrong… with capitalism….

There must be a better distribution of wealth and maybe America must move toward a democratic socialism.

The only permanent solution to the exploitation and oppression of African-Americans is Socialism, based on the multiracial working class becoming the masters of their own society, culture, and economy. Only on this basis can the age-old double exploitation of Blacks be eliminated and replaced by a society fit for all human beings to live in. Only on this basis can the African-American working class take its rightful place as masters of the country that was built by the blood and sweat of its slavery: both the chattel slavery of the plantation and the wage slavery of the city.

The lesson of this history is that if we keep our politics independent of the Republican and Democratic Parties and the government; if we rely upon our own power in the streets; if we take up the struggle where Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr. left off, we will win.



Shadow Government Statistics February 16, 2016 World:

Health, Science, Education, and Welfare:

Connect the Dots Between Climate Change and Public Health Heat waves are just one of the types of extreme weather events projected to worsen with climate change. That’s why Dr. Georges Benjamin, executive director of the American Public Health Association, has warned that climate change is “one of the most serious public health threats facing our nation.” Climate change is a major threat facing the public’s health. Preparing for this looming challenge so that we can protect the American people starts with facing the facts. Today’s meeting, with informed discussions to connect the dots between science, evidence-based public policies and planning, and actions on the ground, is exactly the kind of discussion we need and should expect from our government agencies and policymakers. By Kim Knowlton

Why Corporations are Too Big to Jail in the Drug War by Brian Saady