Thursday, September 10, 2015

Sept. 10: the big news that didn't make the irvng press.

Yesterday evening, as I went through world, national and local news, I was astonished at the implications of much of what I was reading. I was looking forward to reading, perhaps, fuller versions and, perhaps, commentary on these stunning events.

Only one made it into the Irving press. It's on B5 - “Iran allows Russian overflights to Syria.” It's a version of events that seems to be several days old – and doesn't tell us much.

As well, all the stories I read last night need explanation - but none of them brought a single word of commentary. In fact, the only commentary that was interesting was the one by Rod Allen. And it was interesting only because it was such bargain basement, badly written, and irrelevant trivia. I cannot understand a newspaper which would permit this level of crap to appear on its pages.

The only local news that caught my eye was that Sackville United Church has been demolished. Unfortunately, it never occurred to the reporter to ask anybody about the significance of that church and its demolition in the context of Sackville's history.

He didn't even mention that I was married there fifty years ago.

The editorial isn't bright. It argues that we should not force parents to get vaccinations for the children before school, but should have “conversations” to convince them. Similarly, I guess we should not fine or jail drunk drivers, but should chat with them.

It concludes that parents who refuse vaccination for their children should be required to make other educational arrangements for their children. Huh? How is that different from forcing them? And how can most parents possibly afford “other” arrangements? This is a solution that could ruin the child's life.

In most newspapers, the editorial is discussed and agreed on by all the editors as a statement of the newspaper's opinion. If that's the case, the editorial boards of the Irving press has a lot of cobwebs in the attic.
So let's take a look at the real news.

For a start, there's a very blunt criticism of Canada in The Guardian – and The Guardian may well be the best, English language paper in the world. We Canadians have been doing dirty work for the U.S. for almost sixty years. Today, we are killing civilians in Iran. That's not simply an accusation. It's from the U.N. We killed Afghans to make an American president like us. We have treated refugees brutally, with Harper alone having put some ten thousand of them into our prisons – that includes children, and sometimes includes solitary. They can spend months, even years in prison, while our government considers their cases and, commonly, deports them.

Why does Harper do that? 1. Because it pleases the bigots of Canada. 2. because it pleases the fearful – and they are a major part of the Harper vote. 3. because it pleases the U.S. where the hysteria is even worse than in Canada.

Once upon a time, Canada was respected around the world. But no more. The rest of the world recognizes what we have become. We have played a full share in creating the Middle East Crisis. We aren't hated; we are despised as puppets of a very greedy and murderous American capitalism. Once upon a time, to be Canadian was to be proud. Now, it's to be ashamed.



Then there's a video interview with Julian Assange of Wikileaks. It's about the scale of murder, torture, starvation imposed on billions of people by U.S. capitalism. Yes, it appears in a Russian media release. But it's more valid than anything I've seen in any North American newspapers. And Assange is a man who will, some day, by murdered by the U.S. for telling what he knows. There is no reward for him in this. He can't even go out on his balcony for fear of being shot by a U.S. agent.


Then there was a big story on CBC News on Sept. 9, about a wealthy Canadian who hasn't paid taxes for years because he keeps his money in an offshore account. The story also revealed that this is a very common practice among the very rich, and not just in Canada. We all know people that refers to in New Brunswick. How could an honest news editor miss that story when local CBC radio had it?

Worse, what we do get is economic and governmental preaching from the “eminent and respected” professors Savoie and Saillant who don't seem to be aware that there are such things as tax avoidance for the very, very rich. And maybe, just maybe, this tax acoidancecould be a factor in our provincial economic condition.

It is not possible for news editors to be so ignorant they don't know about this. That means they can only be lying and propagandizing.

Then there's what could be the biggest story of the year. Reuters has reported Russian troops in Syria, and fighting against ISIL. The U.S., of course, is angry because only it and its puppets (like Canada) are allowed to fight ISIL.

Russia is not going there as Santa Claus, of course. It needs Assad to stay in power in order to put through the pipeline I discussed yesterday. Nor is the U.S. in the fighting because of kind hearts like the Koch brothers.

So we aren't talking about good guys and bad guys here.

The U.S. has made the Middle East a hell hole because of American capitalist greed. That has created a refugee crisis that won't directly affect the U.S. and Canada, because both governments have said the hell with the refugees. Let them drown. (And we'll put up monuments, and feel all virtuous about it.)

However, the refugees are creating a crisis in the European Union – and that crisis can only get worse, probably very much worse. The policies of American oil capitalists and of the politicians who take orders from them are leading to instability throughout Europe.

This Russian intervention could lead to nuclear war if Obama insists on continuing the middle east policies that have been favoured by oil billionaires and Bush – and Obama.

Or it could be that the oil billionaires will grow brains, and realize that widespread instability is not good for business. Russian intervention could defeat ISIL. That would be good for the U.S. - but not for the oil billionaires because 1.it would keep al-Assad in power which would mean preserving the pipeline agreement, thereby making money for Russian capitalist oil billionaires. It would also give Russia a long-term influence in the region.

I have no idea how this will work out. Putin has consistently outplayed Bush and Obama in diplomacy. It's possible that the U.S. and Russia will come to a deal which would end the cold war, and integrate itself into the European Union. But any guess is just a guess because we are not dealing with people who are entirely sane. (For an example of that, read the Trump story on p. B5. So far, his only foreign policy seems to be that he would make changes so quickly “It will make your head spin.” And I'm not sure that's a good way to make foreign policy.)

The CBC report below is important – though not really as unbiased as a news commentary should be. It's pretty light on the role of American oil billionaires in creating this mess. But this is a story with enormous implications- and I'm astonished that the Irving press editors don't seem to have realized that.



Then there's the item a reader sent, saying it seemed to sum up my analysis. And, yes, it does. And I love it.

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