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Showing posts from June, 2021

The death of neoliberalism

New Economic Thinking     Market fetishists may not know it yet, but it's over. Suresh Naidu breaks down neoliberalism, and why it can no longer support itself.  

Biden's lawless bombing of Iraq and Syria only serves the weapons industry funding both parties

For the second time in the five months since he was inaugurated, President Joe Biden on Sunday ordered a U.S. bombing raid on Syria, and for the first time, he also bombed Iraq. The rationale offered was the same as Biden's first air attack in February: the U.S., in the words of Pentagon spokesman John Kirby, “ conducted defensive precision airstrikes against facilities used by Iran-backed militia groups in the Iraq-Syria border region. ” He added that “ the United States acted pursuant to its right of self-defense. ”  Embedded in this formulaic Pentagon statement is so much propaganda and so many euphemisms that, by itself, it reveals the fraudulent nature of what was done. To begin with, how can U.S. airstrikes carried out in Iraq and Syria be "defensive” in nature? How can they be an act of “self-defense"? Nobody suggests that the targets of the bombing campaign have the intent or the capability to strike the U.S. "homeland” itself. Neither Syria nor Iraq is a U.S

How the GameStop hustle worked

How hedge funds and brokers have manipulated the market   by Lucy Komisar   Part 1   I have written previously for the Prospect about the frenzy over GameStop (GME), the video game and electronics company. By now, you know the story. Millions of retail investors made the stock soar by over 1,000 percent in January 2021. This brought disaster upon a handful of hedge funds that had bet on GameStop’s stock to drop. According to Markets Insider , one analyst estimated losses in February of roughly $19 billion. The hedge fund Melvin Capital reportedly closed out its position after taking a drubbing of 51 percent. Another fund, Maplelane, lost 40 percent. The rally eventually subsided, and the stock fell, though it remains well above its original price. But as retail investors looked into the details in the aftermath, they found telltale signs of a common yet egregious trading fraud by major brokers and hedge funds, which evaded what could have been far bigger losses.    What happened aroun

The notorious London spy school churning out many of the world’s top journalists

The fact that the very department that trains high state officials and agents of secretive three letter agencies is also the place that produces many of the journalists we rely on to stand up to those officials and keep them in check is seriously problematic.   by Alan Macleod   Part 3 - The British invasion Unsurprisingly for a university based in London, the primary journalistic destination for Department of War Studies graduates is the United Kingdom. Indeed, the BBC, the country’s powerful state broadcaster, is full of War Studies alumni. Arif Ansari, head of news at the BBC Asian Network, completed a masters analyzing the Syrian Civil War in 2017 and was soon selected for a leadership development scheme, placing him in charge of a team of 25 journalists who curate news primarily geared toward the substantial Middle Eastern and South Asian communities in Great Britain. Many BBC employees begin studying at King’s years after their careers have already taken off, and balance their pr

Θα αντέξει ο "ανέμελος Μωυσής" άλλα δύο χρόνια καθυστερήσεις;

globinfo freexchange   Ο Κούλης και η συμμορία του φαίνεται ότι βιάζονται να ξεπληρώσουν τα γραμμάτια που χρωστάνε στους ολιγάρχες. Το Μητσοτακοκαθεστώς, μετά την κατάπτυστη νομοθεσία για τα εργασιακά που θεσμοθετεί επισήμως και με τη βούλα την εργασιακή ζούγκλα και την επιστροφή στο Μεσαίωνα, σπεύδει για το ασφαλιστικό έκτρωμα.  Φαίνεται ότι όσο περνάει ο καιρός, διαλύεται όλο και πιο πολύ η επικοινωνιακή βιτρίνα που έχει στήσει η μιντιακή χούντα για λογαριασμό του καθεστώτος. Αυτό φάνηκε πολύ καθαρά, ιδιαίτερα κατά την τελευταία επιχείρηση αναθέρμανσης του κοινωνικού αυτοματισμού, προκειμένου να διχαστεί η κοινωνία με αφορμή το κατάπτυστο νομοσχέδιο Χατζηδάκη. Τα μιντιακά "τρεχαντήρια" πήραν εντολή να σπεύσουν στα λιμάνια για να ψαρέψουν αγανακτισμένους πολίτες που ήθελαν να αναχωρήσουν για κάποιο προορισμό με τα πλοία της γραμμής. Όμως οι "σφαλιάρες" έπεσαν απανωτές, καθώς οι ταξιδιώτες πήραν το μέρος των απεργών και έριξαν την ευθύνη, ως επί το πλείστων, στις ετ

Pro-war journos get owned by Aaron Maté and Jimmy Dore

The Jimmy Dore Show   Aaron Maté and Jimmy Dore give the final blow to now fully exposed pseudo-progressives, crypto-establishment pro-imperialists of TYT and The Intercept .  

Establishment declares war on Nina Turner

Secular Talk   As progressive icon Nina Turner racks up local endorsements and surges in the polls in a closely watched congressional race, Washington lobbyists and business-friendly Democrats are working to try to block her victory in the August 3 Democratic primary for Ohio’s 11th congressional district. Last week, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton endorsed Turner’s opponent, Shontel Brown, in what observers saw as a response to Turner’s association with Bernie Sanders. On that same day, lobbyists and a corporate-aligned Democratic House coalition hosted a fundraiser to boost Brown, after a poll sponsored by Turner’s campaign found her with a commanding 50-15 lead in the race. 

Day 806: Julian Assange still in prison

failed evolution   World's number one political prisoner, Julian Assange, still in high security prison for exposing horrendous war crimes carried out by the US imperialists and their allies.     

Roger Waters bravely gives the finger to Facebook's oligarch

Roger Waters   Zuckerberg was a little prick when he was grading co-eds. Being very rich changes nothing, he’ll always be a little prick!  

Mexico's anti-neoliberal movement grows despite US meddling and media smears

The Grayzone   Max Blumenthal and Ben Norton discuss Mexico's progressive President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) and the left-wing Morena party alliance victory in the June 2021 elections with journalist José Luis Granados Ceja. They also address US meddling via NED/USAID funding for the neoliberal opposition, as well as the constant media attacks. 

Biden, Putin restore talks as DC hawks promote New Cold War

The Grayzone   At the Geneva summit, President Biden of the US and President Putin of Russia announced the restoration of their ambassadors and agreed to new talks on vital issues. Meanwhile in Washington and major US media outlets, Russiagate-addled hawks promoted increased confrontation. James Carden analyzes the talks and the bellicose US media response. " US media outlets seem to be egging biden on to take a harder line than than the President wanted to, " Carden says. " It's a product of the last several years of Russiagate hysteria. But it also shows who make up the American press really don't know that much about Russia or foreign policy. "  

Illiberal Conservatism Comes to Greece

Under cover of the pandemic, Greece’s right-wing government has passed a slew of new measures to benefit the wealthy at the expense of workers, while massively expanding police powers. On the back of a decade of austerity, the latest laws are set to transform the country into a client state and playground for foreign tourists.   by Matthaios Tsimitakis/Mihalis Panayiotakis    Part 7 - The Emergence of a New Right To put things in a broader European context, the Mitsotakis government is positioned somewhere between the neoliberal authoritarianism of Emmanuel Macron in France, and the illiberal democracy of Viktor Orbán in Hungary. Macron and Orbán, both of whom took advantage of the pandemic to introduce unpopular, authoritarian measures, including the expansion of policing, as well as police protection. But instead of competing with hardline nationalists and conservatives as most right and center-right parties do in Europe, Kyriakos Mitsotakis is incorporating them. In fact, New Democr

The other epidemic killing Americans

People are dying at record rates from opioid overdoses, and harm reduction advocates are asking the Biden administration to overhaul how it deals with the crisis.   by Michelle ChenTwitt  Part 4 - Decriminalization Only about 29 percent of people with opioid use disorders receive specialty drug treatment. Countless others who never make it to treatment end up behind bars.    Tom Smarch recalled how his family was priced out of treatment when his son was thrown into jail at 18. “ There was no other place to go, ” said Smarch, who has since become an advocate for drug policy reform with Shatterproof. “ It was either jail or we would help him with some rehab—but then we didn’t have the financial ability to pay for three months of treatment: $28,000. And so we were stuck between a rock and a hard place. ”  While the prevalence of opioid addiction across race and class lines has encouraged public-health-focused approaches to the crisis, drug-war policies have persisted. According to federal

The notorious London spy school churning out many of the world’s top journalists

The fact that the very department that trains high state officials and agents of secretive three letter agencies is also the place that produces many of the journalists we rely on to stand up to those officials and keep them in check is seriously problematic.   by Alan Macleod   Part 2 - American connections Although a British university, King’s College markets itself heavily to American students. There are currently 1,265 Americans enrolled, making up about 4% of the student body. Many graduates of the Department of War Studies go on to attain powerful positions in major American media outlets. Andrew Carey, CNN’s Bureau Chief in Jerusalem, for example, completed a master’s there in 2012.    Carey’s coverage of the latest Israeli attack on Gaza has presented the apartheid state as “responding” to Hamas rocket attacks, rather than being the instigator of violence. A leaked internal memo Carey sent to his staff last month at the height of the bombardment instructed them to always includ

The Secret IRS Files: Trove of Never-Before-Seen Records Reveal How the Wealthiest Avoid Income Tax

The Secret IRS Files: Trove of Never-Before-Seen Records Reveal How the Wealthiest Avoid Income Tax by Jesse Eisinger, Jeff Ernsthausen and Paul Kiel ProPublica is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative newsroom. Sign up for The Big Story newsletter to receive stories like this one in your inbox . Series: The Secret IRS Files Inside the Tax Records of the .001% In 2007, Jeff Bezos, then a multibillionaire and now the world’s richest man, did not pay a penny in federal income taxes. He achieved the feat again in 2011. In 2018, Tesla founder Elon Musk, the second-richest person in the world, also paid no federal income taxes. Michael Bloomberg managed to do the same in recent years. Billionaire investor Carl Icahn did it twice. George Soros paid no federal income tax three years in a row. ProPublica has obtained a vast trove of Internal Revenue Service data on the tax returns of thousands of the nation’s wealthiest people, covering m

Day 800: Julian Assange still in prison

failed evolution   World's number one political prisoner, Julian Assange, still in high security prison for exposing horrendous war crimes carried out by the US imperialists and their allies.     

Το Μητσοτακικό καθεστώς διαλύει τον κόσμο της εργασίας με τον νεοφιλελεύθερο οδοστρωτήρα

globinfo freexchange   Ήταν άδικο, το έκανε πράξη. Το άθλιο Μητσοτακοκαθεστώς προχωρεί ακάθεκτο και διαλύει στο πέρασμά του ότι απέμεινε  από αυτά που κατακτήθηκαν από τον κόσμο της εργασίας μετά από δεκαετίες σκληρών αγώνων.   Το είχε υποσχεθεί άλλωστε ο Κούλης στα "αφεντικά" πριν από τις εθνικές εκλογές: « Να σαρώσουμε ως οδοστρωτήρες τα εμπόδια που κρατούν δέσμια την επιχειρηματικότητα », « Δεν πρέπει να μπλέξουμε στα χωράφια των εργαζόμενων και των επιχειρηματιών οι οποίοι έχουν συμφωνήσει τι είναι καλό για τους ίδιους ».   Το'πε και το'κανε.   Είχαμε άλλωστε προειδοποιήσει από το Ιούνιο του 19 πως αυτό είναι ότι χρειάζεται να ξέρετε για το τι περιμένει τους εργαζόμενους με μια κυβέρνηση ΝΔ. Η απάντηση Μητσοτάκη αποδεικνύει για άλλη μια φορά το πόσο αυτός και η παρέα του πιστεύουν με τυφλό φανατισμό στις καταστροφικές νεοφιλελεύθερες πολιτικές. Αυτές που επιβλήθηκαν με την Τρόικα και τα μνημόνια. Οι συνταγές ΔΝΤ δηλαδή, οι οποίες όπου και αν εφαρμόστηκαν έσπει

Capitalism looks a lot like Feudalism in the USA now!   For years, the wealthy have been buying up all the available homes across the country and turning them into rental properties to create a permanent renter class reminiscent of feudalistic Europe during the Middle Ages. 

The Pentagon seriously contemplated nuking China in 1958

Newly leaked documents show that US officials in 1958 cavalierly planned a nuclear strike on China over a handful of disputed islands. As Washington once more stokes tensions with China, it’s a reminder of the callous recklessness at the heart of US foreign policy.   by Branko Marcetic  Part 3 - A Loaded Gun Onstage In short, the picture painted by the study is the very opposite of the sensible, responsible US leadership pined for by those who have spent the past five years feeding the public the image of an idealized pre-Donald-Trump past. It instead shows US officials rashly jumping to nuclear strikes as a first response to Cold War conflict and ruling out the less inflammatory course of conventional warfare, well aware of global opposition to this idea and of the potential for things to spiral out of control into all-out nuclear war that informed it — all for the sake of prestige and psychological one-upmanship. As Ellsberg told the Times , there’s no reason to believe the individua

How Bill Gates impeded global access to Covid vaccines

Through his hallowed foundation, the world’s de facto public health czar has been a stalwart defender of monopoly medicine.  by Alexander Zaitchik Part 6 - Gates has been tacitly and explicitly defending the legitimacy of knowledge monopolies since his first Gerald Ford–era missives against open-source software hobbyists This winter, while Gates assured the world that intellectual property was a red herring, a bloc of developing countries at the WTO explained the need for a waiver on certain intellectual property provisions by pointing to the “ rather large gap [that] exists between what COVAX or ACT-A can deliver and what is required in developing and least developed countries. ” The forceful statement continued:     The model of donation and philanthropic expediency cannot solve the fundamental disconnect between the monopolistic model it underwrites and the very real desire of developing and least developed countries to produce for themselves.… The artificial shortage of vaccines