OWS Rappers join Occupy activists in push for ‘foreclosure-free zone’ http://t.co/Za60zs1d
Human Rights Day rally: “U.S. government can never be a champion of human rights” http://t.co/xs8yRxlC
Starbucks hit by UK Uncut protests as tax row boils over
Thousands protest in Kuwait City
The major recording labels are on a fresh High Court mission to force Ireland’s Internet service providers to block The Pirate Bay.
Unions prepare for protest at Michigan Capitol http://t.co/5H0dVQ9G
War in Iran is imminent (old reblogged post)
Egypt: Between revolution 3.0 and civil war
Uh-oh. Democrats in Congress are changing their tune on means testing in Medicare, an idea the late Sen. Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.) resisted for decades.
Bitcoin exchange wins right to operate as a ban
Breaking the Taboo wants to turn Youtube views into political change
Delegates from the United States are running out of time to bury proposals that could have a major effect on the Internet as a United Nations treaty conference heads into its final week.
Fuck the USDA! Under pressure from lawmakers, the Department of Agriculture (USDA) has changed its school lunch requirements to allow more meats and grains.
About 68% of US adults are overweight or obese, says National Cancer Institute, putting them at greater risk for cancer
More Walmart suppliers found making clothes at site of deadly fire in Bangladesh http://t.co/E05S3SJ9
#Fracking for Foreigners? New Report From Feds Backs More Natural Gas Exports http://t.co/xAMW2Cws
Monsanto’s Suicide Economy: Nearly 300,000 Indian farmers have committed suicide since 1995 http://t.co/W7Af09XQ
Anonymous Quote: “Politicians luv ignorant uninformed ppl b/c that means they cn get away w/ murder.” http://t.co/T8zOdrxW
Bill Clinton: Drug war ‘hasn’t worked’
Taking Over the Republican Party:
The United States has blocked a conference aimed at banning nuclear weapons in the Middle East
Fareed Zakaria: End the war on terror and save billions - [The mainstream starts to abandon the EndlessWar team]
Doha climate change deal clears way for ‘damage aid’ to poor nations
Fuck William Hague, goddamn war criminal: William Hague confirms ‘evidence’ of Syrian chemical weapons
Special report: Homeless banker hits rock bottom
Editor’s note: This article is also a bit old (from February) but it talks about how the Iran war is coming around the corner. Also, its by me, which is why I’m reblogging it.
Recently, the diplomatic relations between the governments of Iran and the United States have heated up. First, the U.S. government accused the Iranian Revolutionary Guard (IRIG) of plotting to kill the Saudi Ambassador to the United States. Investigative journalist Gareth Porter, on the Real News Network, proved the government’s narrative on the assassination plot was an elaborate set up to implicate Iran as part of a campaign against the country and possibly lead to a war. Later a CIA drone was downed in the country and the Iranian government kept it as a trophy. Then there were reportedly bombings inside Iran. A Baltimore Sun article published today commented that these activities “suggest a covert program [in Iran] by the West or its proxies aimed at sabotaging the effort [of Iran to build a nuclear program].” For activists like those that write on Antiwar.com this is no surprise. In fact the site has a day of mass action on February 4th to stop a war in Iran. For Iranian residents, these covert actions confirm their worst fear: the United States government is meddling in their affairs.
This is not the first time the United States has intervened in Iran. In 1953, the CIA overthrew the democratically-elected President, Mossadegh (who nationalized the oil companies) in “Operation Ajax” and replaced him with the Shah by creating a popular uprising. The Shah was brutal and supported American business, basically a puppet of the United States government. Only a few years earlier, the U.S. government had conducted a military action in the country. But in 1979 the Shah left Iran for medical treatment in the United States and Ayatollah Khomeini returned to Iran to unite those with an anti-Shah sentiment. A few months later, in a national referendum, he was elected the Supreme Leader of an Islamic Republic. Islamic fundamentalists dominated the government and an anti-American fervor was present in the country and populace. Ever since, relations between Iran and America have been strained.
Those strains have been reignited with the rhetoric of the establishment. President Obama seemed to advocate for peaceful resolution in his State of the Union, then he said sanctions will continue. He stated that the “America[n government] is determined to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon, and I will take no options off the table to achieve that goal.” James Clapper, the Director of National Intelligence said in a recent intelligence committee hearing that because of Iran’s supposed assassination attempt that “Iranian officials…are now willing to conduct an attack in the United States in response…to [threatening] US actions” and that “Iran will…sponsor future attacks in the United States.” Other government officials such as CIA Director David Petraeus and FBI Director Robert Muller confirmed these inflammatory ideas in their testimony. FBI Director Muller said that the FBI would be reorganized to investigate cyberattacks, which the Pentagon has previously declared as an “act of war.” In the international realm, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak and Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah support military action to forcefully prevent Iran from producing nuclear weapons. Two laws introduced in the House of Representatives that harshly dealt with Iran received more than 400 votes.
One of the leading reasons for going to war is disabling Iran’s nuclear program. The truth is that nuclear weapons are not being produced in Iran. Ex-CIA analyst Ray McGovern proves once again in a Real News Network blogpost that from conclusions made by U.S. and Israeli intelligence services, it is evident that Iran does not have nuclear weapons production. McGovern has looked at National Intelligence reports, testimony from Congress and found the same conclusion. One must understand the “propaganda of war” distributed in violation of Article 20, 1 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights to create a war in Iran.
Under the Authorization of Military Force (AUMF) and AUMF for Iraq, President Obama could invade Iran. Obama could say he is taking “necessary actions against international terrorists” or is “prevent[ing] any future acts of international terrorism” by bringing American troops into Iran. Also the War Powers Resolution could be used to begin a war. The law states that the President can bring armed forces into a country if “imminent involvement in hostilities is clearly indicated” or more important if a “national emergency [is] created by attack upon the United States [and its empire].” Based on previous history of the American empire, it is possible the United States government may claim an Iranian action (or U.S. action) is an “attack upon the United States” or will goat Iran into action, causing an attack on U.S. soil or U.S. vessel, justifying a war. With the escalation of the U.S. military presence around Iran, war is imminent by any measure of conjecture.
397-0. House approves resolution to keep Internet control out of UN hands
Israel expands settlements,
Obama expands drones
From Small Island States to Largest Polluters, “Everyone Is Looking to the U.S.” on Global Warming
NBC spreads propaganda and says Syria has chemical weapons
http://worldnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/12/05/15706380-syria-loads-chemical-weapons-into-bombs-military-awaits-assads-order?lite (seriously, this whole article is bullcrap as are others like the ones in the Telegraph of London, FOX News and elsewhere with the same story, for better coverage, I recommend this video:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zKq2xzIg8jM, at the same time,
U.S. Military Working on Mali Intervention as USS Eisenhower Moves off the Coast of Syria http://t.co/TT0eUm30)
Has the US Set a March Deadline for War on Iran?
Senate orders study on U.S. no-fly zone in Syria
Oh no! What I feared is happening.* US military planners focused on Mali intervention - U.S. military planners are working closely with African nations in advance of an offensive to wrest control of northern Mali from al-Qaida linked extremists
Syria foreign ministry spokesman’s whereabouts in question
Goldman Sachs Is Occupied
Times Square, Dec. 6: Rise Up New York! Smash Austerity! Support Workers!
The US Military Approves Bombing Children
Entitlements Are Fundamental Human Rights, Not Political Poker Chips to Be Bargained Away
Several killed in Egypt clashes
Chipping away at democracy in Nicaragua and Panama
The New Border: Illegal Immigration’s Shifting Frontier
Iraq Blocks Syria’s Request to Fetch Combat Helicopters from Russia
Electric bus rapidly recharges using wireless charge plates at stops
The White House is “absolutely” prepared to go over the “fiscal cliff”
An appeal to government: ‘It pays to invest in the poor’ http://bit.ly/YwrHCD
Overall, 53% of Americans say same-sex marriage should be legal, tying the record high, while 46% say it should not.
h/t Rocky Anderson
remember that time President Obama ordered the military to fire indiscriminate missile attacks on populated areas?
LTMC: Frankly it would be better if it was indiscriminate, given that Obama has ordered the military, quite discriminately, to “double tap” drone targets by shooting missiles at civilian rescue workers attempting to tend to the wounded from drone attacks in Pakistan. I suppose this could somehow be justified in a Machiavellian paradigm if we were killing lots of terrorists. But America currently kills 49 people with drones for every known terrorist in Pakistan. And that too, quite discriminately, it would seem.
The whole thing is made even more grand by the fact that Pakistani political leaders have asked Washington to stop doing this. But they haven’t, despite the fact that the Pakistani government publicly opposes the program, which the State Department’s top lawyer says may make U.S. drone strikes in Pakistan an act of war under international law.
Oh, I forgot to mention that a 2007 report by the Homeland Security Institute called the “double tap” a “favorite tactic of Hamas,” and the FBI considers it to be a tactic chiefly employed by terrorist organizations. I suppose it takes one to know one, in the War on Terror.
Quality post right here. For all the interest that drone strikes draw in the current political climate, rarely do I see such a concise critique of not only the bloodshed itself but the immorality of the specific tactic, and the double speak that comes out of Washington during the rare times that it is discussed in public.
Damn. Props to NixonPlumbingCo for the research. Click the link that he/she posted saying: “Obama has ordered the military, quite discriminately, to “double tap” drone targets by shooting missiles at civilian rescue workers attempting to tend to the wounded from drone attacks in Pakistan.”
Oh no, don’t thank me for the research, that was Letterstomycountry. I don’t do shout outs very often, but I feel it’s necessary to thank them for their great research and fantastic blog in general. If you’re not following them, you’re missing out.
I am happy to join in this conversation and oppose drones the best I can, because they lead to permanent war in ny mind.
Howard Zinn’s statement that the Holocaust wouldn’t have happened without the frenzy of war…
As the situation in Gaza heats up and Israel commits more war crimes (bombing hospitals, media center, random houses), there are other troubling events in the world…
Torrents everywhere!!! (What would Jesus Download?? Haha)
Obama in Burma: A Milestone for Reform or Groundwork for Oil-Friendly Junta Rule?
FINALLY!!! Occupy Wall Street, Not Palestine: OWS Says No To War
U.N. Special Rapporteur Calls for Global Protection of Gaza Civilians from U.S.-Backed Israeli Assault
Palestinian Civilians Bear the Brunt of Unrelenting Bombings in U.S.-Backed Attack on Gaza
1 Dead, 1 Missing in Fire on Gulf Coast Oil Rig
Oh, come on!! Obama Calls Corporate CEOs as “Fiscal Cliff” Talks Begin
RIAA Hammers Google With DMCA Takedowns In Six Strikes Prelude
Protesters Hold Weekend of Actions Against Military Training Base in Georgia
Turkish PM Calls Israel a ‘Terrorist State,’ US State Dept. Refuses to Comment
WTF!!!Flatten all of Gaza
Chomsky Statement on Israel’s War on Gaza
Occupy Sandy builds on longstanding progressive tradition
Thousands in Ireland march for woman refused an abortion
HOW SAFE ARE AMERICA’S PIPELINES?
FIVE MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT OUR TATTERED SAFETY NET
THE TRANS-PACIFIC PARTNERSHIP: THIS IS WHAT CORPORATE GOVERNANCE LOOKS LIKE
IT’S THE INTEREST, STUPID! WHY BANKERS RULE THE WORLD
Slaughterhouse Fined $500m in Biggest Meat-Recall in US History
Ron Paul: You’re Not Free If You Can’t Secede From An Oppressive Government
“No country on Earth would tolerate missiles raining down on its citizens from outside its borders,” Says Man Who Regularly Bombs Pakistan and Yemen
Ten Numbers the Rich Would Like Fudged
Why Obama is more than Bush with a human face
Israel facing ‘millions’ of cyber-attacks over Gaza
Violent protest against opening of new Golden Dawn office (neo-nazis)
Inside the Psyche of the 1%
What is Israel Really Up to in Gaza?
New York Times acknowledges conspiracy of silence over “fiscal cliff”
Walmart Asks a Judge to Block Historic Black Friday Strikes
That’s all, y’all!
The Screwed Election: Wall Street Can’t Lose, and America Can’t Win
August 11, 2012 - by Joel Kotkin
About two in three Americans do not think what’s good for Wall Street is good for America, according to the 2012 Harris poll, but do think people who work there are less “honest and moral than other people,” and don’t “deserve to make the kind of money they earn.” Confidence in banks is at a record low, according to Gallup, as they’ve suffered the steepest fall in esteem of any American institution over the past decade. And people have put their money where their mouth is, with $171 billion leaving the stock market last year alone, and 80 percent of Wall Street communications executives conceded that public perception of their firms was not good.
Americans are angry at the big-time bankers and brokers, and yet, far from a populist attack on crony capitalism, Wall Street is sitting pretty, looking ahead to a presidential election that it can’t possibly lose. They have bankrolled a nifty choice between President Obama, the largest beneficiary of financial-industry backing in history and Mitt Romney, one of their very own.
One is to the manner born, the other a crafty servant; neither will take on the power.
Think of this: despite taking office in the midst of a massive financial meltdown, Obama’s administration has not prosecuted a single heavy-hitter among those responsible for the financial crisis. To the contrary, he’s staffed his team with big bankers and their allies. Under the Bush-Obama bailouts the big financial institutions have feasted like pigs at the trough, with the six largest banks borrowing almost a half trillion dollars from uncle Ben Bernanke’s printing press. In 2013 the top four banks controlled more than 40 percent of the credit markets in the top 10 states—up by 10 percentage points from 2009 and roughly twice their share in 2000. Meantime, small banks, usually the ones serving Main Street businesses, have taken the hit along with the rest of us with more than 300 folding since the passage of Dodd-Frank, the industry-approved bill to “reform” the industry.
Yet past the occasional election-year bout of symbolic class warfare, the oligarchs have little to fear from an Obama victory.
“Too big to fail,” enshrined in the Dodd-Frank bill, enjoys the full and enthusiastic support of the administration. Obama’s financial tsar on the GM bailout, Steven Rattner, took to The New York Times to stress that Obamians see nothing systemically wrong with the banking system we have now, blaming the 2008 market meltdown on “old-fashioned poor management.”
“In a world of behemoth banks,” he explained to we mere mortals, “it is wrong to think we can shrink ours to a size that eliminates the ‘too big to fail’ problem without emasculating one of our most successful industries.”
But consider the messenger. Rattner, while denying wrongdoing, paid $6.2 million and accepted a two-year ban on associating with any investment adviser or broker-dealer to settle with the SEC over the agency’s claims that he had played a role in a pay-to-play scheme involving a $50,000 contribution to the now-jailed politician who controlled New York State’s $125 billion pension fund. He’s also expressed unlimited admiration for the Chinese economic system, the largest expression of crony capitalism in history. Expect Rattner to be on hand in September, when Democrats gather in Charlotte, the nation’s second-largest banking city, inside the Bank of America Stadium to formally nominate Obama for a second term.
In a sane world, one would expect Republicans to run against this consolidation of power, that has taxpayers propping up banks that invest vast amounts in backing the campaigns of the lawmakers who levy those taxes. The party would appeal to grassroots capitalists, investors, small banks and their customers who feel excluded from the Washington-sanctioned insiders’ game. The popular appeal is there. The Tea Party, of course, began as a response against TARP.
Instead, the partynominated a Wall Street patrician, Mitt Romney, whose idea of populism seems to be donning a well-pressed pair of jeans and a work shirt.
Romney himself is so clueless as to be touting his strong fund-raising with big finance. His top contributors list reads something like a rogue’s gallery from the 2008 crash: Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, Morgan Stanley, Credit Suisse, Citicorp, and Barclays. If Obama’s Hollywood friends wanted to find a perfect candidate to play the role of out-of-touch-Wall Street grandee, they could do worse than casting Mitt.
With Romney to work with, David Axelrod’s dog could design the ads right now.
True, some of the finance titans who thought Obama nifty back in 2008 have had their delicate psyches ruffled by the president’s election-year attacks on the “one percent.” But the “progressives,” now tethered to Obama’s chain, are deluding themselves if they think the president’s neo-populist rancor means much of anything. They get to serve as what the Old Bosheviks would have called “useful idiots,” pawns in the fight between one group of oligopolists and another.
This division can be seen in the financial community as well. For the most part Obama has maintained the loyalty of those financiers, like Rattner, who seek out pension funds to finance their business. Those who underwrite and speculate on public debt have reason to embrace Washington’s free spenders. They are also cozy to financiers like John Corzine, the former Goldman Sachs CEO and governor of New Jersey, whose now-disgraced investment company MF Global is represented by Attorney General Eric Holder’s old firm.
The big-government wing of the financial elite remains firmly in Obama’s corner, as his bundlers (including Corzine) have already collected close to $20 million from financial interests for the president. Record support has also poured in from Silicon Valley, which has become ever more like a hip Wall Street west. Like its east-coast brethren, Silicon Valley has also increased its dependence on government policy, as well-connected venture capitalists and many in the tech community have sought to enrich themselves on the administration’s “green” energy schemes.
Romney, on the other hand, has done very well with capital tied to the energy industry, and others who invest in the broad private sector, where government interventions are more often a complication than a means to a fast buck.His broad base of financial support reflects how relatively few businesses have benefited from the current regime.
Who loses in this battle of the oligarchs? Everyone who depends on the markets to accurately give information, and to provide fundamental services, like fairly priced credit.
And who wins? The politically well-situated, who can profit from credit and regulatory policies whether those are implemented by Republicans or Democrats.
American democracy and the prosperity needed to sustain it are both diminished when Wall Street, the great engineer of the 2008 crash, is all but assured of victory in November.
This is very true. But its nothing new. Democrats and Republicans have served the wealthy since 1854 when the GOP was created (and before that for Democrats who have existed since the country’s founding). People should vote for third parties for President as there is a good amount of choices out there like Jill Stein (Green Party), Rocky Anderson (Justice Party), Stewart Alexander (Socialist Party), Peta Lindsay (Party for Socialism and Liberation), Roseanne Barr (Peace and Freedom Party), and even Gary Johnson (Libertarian Party) if you are so inclined. But, direct nonviolent action is the still best approach. Howard Zinn wrote in A People’s History of the United States about World War II and noted [I bolded certain parts]:
“The difficulty of merely calling for “peace” in a world of capitalism, Fascism, Communism- dynamic ideologies, aggressive actions-troubled some pacifists. They began to speak of “revolutionary nonviolence.” A. J. Muste of the Fellowship of Reconciliation said in later years: “I was not impressed with the sentimental, easygoing pacifism of the earlier part of the century. People then felt that if they sat and talked pleasantly of peace and love, they would solve the problems of the world.” The world was in the midst of a revolution, Muste realized, and those against violence must take revolutionary action, but without violence. A movement of revolutionary pacifism would have to “make effective contacts with oppressed and minority groups such as Negroes, share-croppers, industrial workers.”