Sunday, March 6, 2016

March 6: Sometimes, even the CBC can blow it

Here's a CBC report on the glowing health of the U.S. economy. It takes the official government figure, and says unemployment is down to 4.9%.

So it is, by the methods used by the department of Labor. But the Department of Labor is wrong. The real rate is over double that. And it's worse than even that might appear. Almost all of the new jobs are minimum wage. That's part of the reason why so many food stamps are being issued. And those being issued are coming nowhere close to what's needed as more of the national budget gets  spent on highly corrupt war industries. Hey, somebody has to pay for the millions of dollars the Clintons have received for giving speeches to wealthy audiences.

So here's a sobering opinion on the same topic.
Something that is almost always left out of our news media is what surely should be news.  Of all coountries in the world, the United States is the only one that has publicly announced it has the right to ignore the rule of international law. It is allowed to attack any country it likes, to kill anybody it likes.

The invasion of Iraq and Afghanistan were both invasions against international law. U.S. leaders should have been tried in an International court on both counts. When the U.S. supplied Syrian 'rebels' with money, weapons and training, that was against international law. The U.S., Britain, and France have all moved special ops into Libya. That is against international law. The U.S. routinely sends special ops killers into South America. It invaded Haiti quite illegally, and deported the elected government. And our press called it 'peacekeeping'.

The Saudi invasion of Yemen is illegal, as is American and British support for it. Canadian bombing of Syria was illegal, as is  Canadian involvement now in Syria.  (And it doesn't matter whether they're in combat. It's illegal even if they're there just to get tans.) The American imposition of sanctions on various countries - like Cuba - is illegal.

The belief that there had to be a sense of law and order in  international affairs developed just over a century ago. And it was under the rules of such law that we declared some Germans and Japanese war criminals after  WW2, and hanged them. But, obviously, the law does not apply to the U.S.

And who benefits from this refusal to conform to the law? You and I don't. But oil and mining billionaires do. They receive the benefit of a big government's military clout to get minerals, including oil, all over the world, and get them on the cheap (for them.) It's not cheap for us because we have to pay the cost of those wars and, sometimes, we have to die in them. And it's not cheap for people who live in those countries whose environment and the people, themselves, are destroyed by oil and mining corporations.

The U.S. and India are now preparing for naval exercises with powerful fleets just outside Chinese waters - and perhaps even in waters that China claims. The Chinese say this is a provocation, and so it is. Can  you imagine the the indignation of the U.S. if Russia and China were to conduct naval exercises just off the shores of Pearl Harbour?

Under capitalist 'democracy', as under monarchy, most people have had to settle for coming off a distant second-best. Now,   we're making the final move with what's left of democracy being bought out to hand over all power to big business. And the news media, almost all owned by big business, have played a major role in that.

You can see this process very clearly in the U.S. with the changing role of police. They are now deliberately trained along military lines, commonly using military equipment including armoured cars and tanks,  camouflage suits (on city streets, for pete's sake), and units in full military gear to attack homes. Their major role is no longer to protect citizens. It is to keep them in line to do what they're told.
Canada had a spell of this in 1919 when the city of Winnipeg had a general strike, and the RCMP was sent in as a military force to break it. In the same period, the Legion was founded in Britain for war veterans. The idea was not to help the veterans. It was to keep them mobilized almost like active troops to put down people who were 'rising above their station' to demand better living conditions. The U.S. elite were having much the same problem at the time.
Readers will notice that the Irving press, especially Norbert Cunningham, constantly hammers and the theme that government is bad, that big government controlling social programmes and schools is worse, that civil servants are incompetent. Only business leaders are capable of operating schools and health care, and everything else.

If Norbert ever reads, he should get a good book on the Canadian economy in World War 2. It was heavily managed and controlled by the Canadian government. It was also astonishingly effective, setting the stage for a post-war prosperity that had NOT happened after a World War 1 in and after which Canadian and American economies were largely under business control.
Governments took over in 1939 because relying on private business had proved to be disastrous. And the Canadian civil service proved itself so effective during and after World War 2 that private businesses commonly sent rising stars to study it.

But big business soon got greedy again. That's when we saw the Norberts of this world writing columns attacking the government and civil service, and praising big business as the model of efficiency and effectiveness.

I'm not sure where this will take us. It has taken the U.S.  to HIllary Clinton and Donald Trump, who are not so different from each other as people imagine. (In fact, there's not that much difference between all of the candidates.)  This certainly won't take us to prosperity because that's not its purpose. More likely, it will take us to chaos.

A system built on greed as an ideal and a motive has never been the basis of a prosperous society. And it never will be. Christians might note that The Bible says that many times - as in thou shalt love they neighbour, that shalt not covet... Of course, not many clergy are likely to point that out.
There's an interesting article by Ralph Nader, suggesting that something positive might be happening in the U.S., that Sanders may be making a massive change through his support from young people.

I hope so. But the very wealthy are not going to make it easy. They're going to use the press, and then the police and domestic spies to promote violence against anybody who wants change. Watch for police in camouflage outfits.
And when looking at greed and corruption linking government and big business, here's a sample of what the builders of Israel did not intend to create.
And this view of the Donald sent to me by a reader.
I include the following as a reminder that there are bad guys on both sides. The item below is an important foreign news story. And it's just the kind of important story the Irving press almost invariably misses. One of the most annoying things about Irving press is that there doesn't seem to any real editing for the Canada and World section. Whoever is doing the editing seems to choose stories at random with no sense of what is important and what is trivial.
And here's something that would never happen in New Brunswick. The Turkish government has seized control of the country's most popular newspaper because it has been telling the truth.

That would never happen here. No. The Irvings protect our freedom to be informed.
It's useful to be careful about believing what we see and hear in the news media. Just over a year ago, over 50,000 photos claiming to be photos of torture and murder carried out by the Syrian government were released. This sort of thing is common practice to help sell a war. Remember Bush and Blair telling us all about how Hussein had weapons of mass destruction they invaded  Iraq and mudered over a million people? The false flag is as old as war, itself.

The bizarre thing about this one is that it was done to summon up the indignation of the American people against Assad. These would be the same American people who tortured and murdered uncounted prisoners, who still do it, and who have never criticized their own government for doing it, and have never demanded the arrest and trial of a single person involved. The only person imprisoned for this is a young American woman who is serving a long, long term for the crime of----telling the public what happened.

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