Monday, July 11, 2016

June 11:

Two political science professors, one at Wheelock College in Boston, the other at University of New Brunswick, have a a book on the market. But you won't find in the irving press.

If the book were by Professor Savoie or Professor Saillant at Moncton, Norbert would be slobbering wet kisses all over it. We'd have editorials, headlines. But it's not. And it says terrible things like, "In the best of times, capitalism tends to produce unemployment, it tends to produce poverty, it tends to produce war, environmental degradation..."  If anything, the book puts it gently.

The book is called "The Servant State: Overseeing Capital Accumulation in Canada". It's by Geoffrey McCormack and Thom Workman. (I don't know whether it will be permitted in the city library. That will be interesting.) Perhaps it could be a sermon topic for the irving chapel, with an opportunity for coffee and discussion in the barn.

An article on this book appeared in The Brief, a sheet out of Fredericton - and a very good one. By e-mail, it's Its website is

It's nice to read acholars who aren't for rent.

This issue also has a couple of stories of murders,  rapes, beatings, environmental destruction carried out by Canadian mining companies in South America. It names the companies. That should make it easy for the irving press to check board of directors and other company lists for Canadian and, possibly, New Brunswick involvement. One is Tahoe; another is Hudbay; and there's Goldcorp.

I made a short list of events that have had only brief and shallow coverage in our news media.
1. Coverage of Dallas and Orlanda shootings has certainly been long (if only by repetition) but frivolous. Killings by police in the U.S. have certainly reached outrageous levels. But that is not anywhere close to what the current demonstrations are about.
The U.S. is still a slave nation. And it is as intensely racist as Europe was in the 1930s. Killings of blacks by American police have certainly turned loose a rage. But any full understanding of what is happening has to take into account the degradation, exploitation, poverty, discrimination of blacks ever since they were 'freed'.
In a U.S. where the wealthy are making themselves wealthier at the expense of everybody else, it's blacks who suffer most with dreadfully neglected schools, lack of jobs, low pay, loss of social services, the world's largest prison system, and one designed not to rehabilitate but to provide cheap labour for the very wealthy  - as well as pofits won by destroying prison services.

If all shooting of blacks were to stop today, the discrimination, humiliation, deprivation of black life in the U.S. would still be there. It would take generations to get past that. And there's no sign

The demonstrations are not just a temporary inconvenience. They are a part of the breakdown of American society. And the intensity of American racism is made greater by the racism that is inflicted on Latins and Muslims. In the case of the latter two groups, Trump's policies are identical to those of Hitler toward Jews in the 1930s.

The US, probably, is not going to get over this racism. The greed of capitalism won't allow it to.

2. The news coverage of the British vote to leave the EU has been just a shallow. New media owned by billionaires have given us a billionaire's of how terrible it is. And they have almost completely ignored what the EU is really all about, and why the British voted to leave.

The EU is, above all, a plan by the wealthy of the U.S. to spread the American economic empire to cover Europe. To that end, effective control over national economies is placed in the hands of an unelected bureaucracy in Brussels. It was unelected by the people. But it was appointed through the influence of the wealthy.

That has led, as it was supposed to, to the growing wealthy of the already wealthy, and the growing poverty of the already poor. That's why the English working class voted against it.

The history of the modern world is largely a  history of how the wealthy have used the poor of their country to murder millions all over the world with all the profits of the theft going to the wealthy, and their own poor maintained as disposaable, cheap labour.

There was a brief period of, perhaps, thirty years after 1945, when that reversed. We got medicare, increased putlic education, pensions....but that's over. The plundering that we falsely call capitalism has returned to its old ways. That's why we have soaring debts, both personal and at federal and national levels.

And that's why we're constantly at war. That's why we live in a world of tens of millions of refugees, and millions of dead from bombs and starvation.

3. The latter point takes us back to 1945 and the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The world raced to build more nuclear weapons by the thousands.
We were assured by our propaganda press that nuclear weapons were wonderful because they were so powerful , nobody would ever use them. And that would be a deterrent to war.

Well, if they were such a red-hot deterrent, how come the west, notably the U.S., Britain and France, have been fighting wars almost constantly since 1945? If they're a deterrent, how can it be that Russia is, we are told, preparing to invade eastern Europe despite the thousands of nuclear bombs aimed at it from bases in the US, on the Russian borders, and in missile-firing submarines?

Either it's a lie that Russia is preparing to invade. Or it's a lie that nuclear weapons are a deterrent.

Amazing how the editors at irving press don't notice these things.

For that matter, why on earth should Russia attack eastern Europe? There is no possible gain for Russia in that to justify the cost of a war. Putin may be unlikeable. But he's not crazy.

No. Russia is not looking for a war. The U.S. is. More correctly, U.S. big business is looking for a war; and the American government is owned by American big business. And almost all North American news media are owned by big business.

And Eastern Europe? It's already been conquered by American big business - in the form of the European Union and NATO. And by the effective destruction of the UN. That's why the U.S. can use the EU and NATO to spread the empire to the middle east.

Common sense should tell big business that if it continues to suck up most of the world's wealth, it will destroy its own source of profits. But I've never seen that common sense has any place in big business.

Incidentally, how on earth can a Christian clergyman possibly accept an invitation to  preach   (for pay?) at the irving chapel?
There's not a whole lot to say about the irving press for today.

One story, on irving getting a huge tax break for one of its properties in St.John, is a journalism school lesson on how not to write a news story. We don't learn until half-way through the story that it's about it's about irving, and that irving has a $500,000 cap on its land tax for 25 years - a deal that costs St. John some 8 million dollars a year. (Year one - journalism school - most people don't read more than the opening parts of any story. So you make sure you open with the important parts - not with tedious detail that doesn't matter.)
Oh, we also learn, if too late, that the province might pick up the tab to spare the irvings anguish. That would be the 8 million. You and me would pay. Boy, isn't it terrible the way this province throws money and schools and at people  who are too lazy to work? Just ask Professor Saillant, or read Norbert's brilliant columns about his book on the provincial debt.

I also have a number of good items sent in by readers - items the irving press would never touch.

Some day, we'll learn. Obama was a disastrous President, as bad as Bush.

Then, from Ralph Nader.

Then there's all the news from South American we'll never see in the irving press.

And there's one on Trump, and where his money is coming from.

The item from The Guardian is about U.S. racism. But the reality is that racism in the US is not historically different from that of Britain or France or Spain - or Canada. To be anti-Jewish or anti-black or anti-oriental in these places as it was in Hitler's Germany. And it's thriving now in the U.S. because many U.S. politicians are using it exactly as Hitler did in the 1930s. To that list, both Canada and the U.S. can add their own native peoples. Then there were Irish-Catholics, Poles, Ukrainians and many others who had their day of being unacceptable in U.S. and Canadian society.

Now, I have to stop because my computer is playing crazy games with me.

1 comment:

  1. "The EU is, above all, a plan by the wealthy of the U.S. to spread the American economic empire to cover Europe. To that end, effective control over national economies is placed in the hands of an unelected bureaucracy in Brussels. It was unelected by the people. But it was appointed through the influence of the wealthy."

    Where did you come up with this stuff? Not about who set the original coal industry euro council back in the early '50s, but this business about unelected bureaucrats running the EU today? Canada's federal bureaucracy is also unelected and runs the day to day business of the federal government. There's two levels of elected oversight in the EU, but that would spoil your rant if you acknowledged the actual reality, I suppose.

    Time to educate yourself. Here's a start:

    The comments are illuminating. Remember Farage is a European MP or was until he decided to tell his chamber mates they were people who'd never worked a day in their lives - well, he'd know I suppose.