Friday, December 16, 2016

Dec. 16: Trump - Same Old Same Old.

Today's irving press has an inspiring 'Commentary' from a propaganda house - Atlantic Institute of Market Studies. Just two days ago it had a major news story on the same topic (cutting back government spending - largely on that part of the spending that goes to filling social needs.) It was not only the same topic - it came from the same propaganda house.

This is an old game. Whenever economic times get tough, the rich are the ones who decide that the poor have to suffer. That's what the rich did in the depression of the 1930s. Everybody suffered - except the rich who hit new heights of wealth. Looks like we might be in for another round.

There was no mention in the news story or the commentary of taxing the rich. No mention of cutting back spending on the rich. No, just two stories in three days on nailing the poor and the middle class, and both of those stories from the same 'institute'.

Oh, I forgot to mention. The owners of the newspaper are the same people who were leading founders of - the Atlantic  Institute of Market Studies. Kiss, kiss.
The Chamber of Commerce will have to hold another big dinner to honour those few wealthy who devote their lives by founding institutions such as the irving press and the Atlantic Institute of Market Studies out of sheer love and concern for the rest of us ungrateful slobs.
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Often, too often, we look at a war, itself, to make judgement about it. But there's a large and lasting part of that war that is largely ignored. In this case, it's what is done to the children. And when we undertake wars, we also create the horrors below which we seldom read of except as side issues. This is not side issue. This is a world of the future we are creating.

Read the article - then keep going to the section 'Related issues". They're all good.

https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2016/dec/16/syrian-refugee-children-working-lebanon-violence-10-hour-days-international-rescue-committee
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I include the following story partly because it's not common for a Canadian prime minister to make the front page of The Guardian. But it's interesting to hear a speech from a person whose political career so far has done remarkably little (and often the reverse) about what he claims are major problems. It's also unusual to see a covering story that hints strongly at criticism of the speaker.  The headline suggests Trudeau has something to say. The covering story does not.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/dec/15/justin-trudeau-interview-globalisation-climate-change-trump

(I have never before seen a statement about a politicians which cites one of his major qualifications is several years as a snowboard instructor.)
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Here's a story that would appear in North American news media, if at all, as a criticism of China. It's about the Chinese capture of an American drone in international waters off China. This story begins as though it's  going to go in the direction of China -    but soon shows a more mature (and more intelligent) sense of what this is all about.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/dec/16/china-seizes-us-underwater-drone-south-china-sea
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While our private press has been happy to leap all over the death toll from Russian bombing of Aleppo, it has largely ignored the toll in Mosul where the west is doing the bombing. My purpose is not to advocate the bombing of either city. My purpose is to illustrate how our news media largely ignore the horror of the bombing of the city our side is bombing, while playing up the bombing of the other.

http://www.countercurrents.org/2016/12/16/while-decrying-massacre-in-aleppo-us-steps-up-bloodshed-in-mosul/
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This is short, and not really a news item. But it sums up a point I have often made about the Christians churches in these times of desperate suffering - much of it imposed by Christians.

(The author refers to his church as the UCC. I presume that means United Church of Canada, a large, Protestant denomination.)

http://www.countercurrents.org/2016/12/16/o-little-town-of-bethlehem/
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The next article is useful in making sense out of Trump. In short, the author says that whatever Trump's campaign might have said, his policies are essentially the same as those of Obama and Bush and many presidents before them. One only has to look at his administration choices to see that.

If anything, he's even more extreme than others of the past.

http://www.countercurrents.org/2016/12/16/can-we-make-sense-of-trump/

The site, countercurrents.org has several columns on this topic. All are worth reading. But beware - there are two countercurrents sites. One  (not recommended) features publication. Look for the one with the words educate, organize after its title.
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There are still lots of people all over the world who don't believe that climate change is happening. Most of them aren't scientists of any sort. Many are news media people employed by media owners - and who would lose their jobs if they openly believed in climate change. And some of them are scum of the earth news media people and academics who find it profitable to say the change doesn't exist. Such people can be found even in the Canadian press. (Yes, they can.)

http://rabble.ca/blogs/bloggers/karl-nerenberg/2016/12/globe-columnist-lauds-trump-and-says-there-no-climate-consensus
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Here's a fascinating story.

https://theintercept.com/2016/12/16/wells-fargo-is-on-a-losing-streak-but-still-has-some-trump-cards/
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Trump has made it clear he intends the greatest assault yet on the environment. And his position as president guarantees the police and the army will be on his side. But it might not work this time. The openess of his assault is quite likely to provoke popular uprisings against any further such damage. He has not won people over to destroying the environment. And it's quite possible he won't - and that his pushing of his agenda may provoke a response that cannot be controlled.
Take note, members of the New Brunswick assembly. Watch. And learn. If you give people no choice, they will make a choice of their own.

https://theintercept.com/2016/12/16/if-you-want-to-see-how-donald-trump-will-destroy-the-environment-read-this-legislative-roadmap/
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And this one.

http://www.truth-out.org/news/item/38752-latest-climate-report-the-arctic-is-unravelling
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How can we sum all this up?

Trump will follow essentially the same policies as Bush and Obama - and as many other presidents of recent years have. True, he will try to build a relationship with Russia. But the purpose of that will be to detach Russia from China. And  that's not likely to work because Putin is smarter than the average American voter.

He will be much more forceful in his approach to exploiting what is left of the environment. And he will be more violent about it than past presidents have been. That will leave his critics with no choice but to respond with violence. I have no doubt that Trump has plans for that, particularly in the lavish use of police and the army.

The catch is that the U.S. is a large place with a population large enough to spread violence over a huge area. As well, Trump could find himself fighting Americans while, at the same time, trying to fight foreign 'enemies'.

He has shown no signs in  his  appointments that he intends to do anything about the social and economic problems of those who made up his voting base. He will try to contain that by raising their fears of blacks or latinos or whoever is useful. It might work, but at the price of making the U.S. an even more dangerous society. It would also be the end of individual rights for Americans - something which has been disappearing for years, anyway.

His aggressive attitude to China will, inevitably, lead to a nuclear war. The US which, in fifteen years, cannot defeat  a minor power like Afghanistan would find itself in a very long, conventional war against China. And the US population has shown that it will not accept a large butcher's bill. No, it would have to be short and nuclear.

Watch for social unrest, probably severe violence, in the U.S. Watch for rising poverty. Watch for increasing instability.
       
Would it have been better to vote for Clinton?

 No. The problem does not begin with the politicians.  It begins with the enormous power of a small number of billionaires, and with their control of information and propaganda through their ownership of news media. And that is a problem Trump (or Clinton) would be most unlikely to deal with.

This has not been simply an election. It has been the end of an era. American democracy has been largely destroyed. This has been a process going back almost to its founding in 1776. It's over. It has been destroyed by a capitalism which is incompatible with democracy. (Notice who it is that Trump has been meeting with? See many poor people there?)

Or, to spread the blame more widely, think back to all those wonderful things we talked of as the reasons we fought World War Two - an end to wars, international cooperation, a shared prosperity...... And we broke every damn one of them.
And, no, it wasn't the communists who did that. It was us. All of us.

1 comment:

  1. I believe the author of the article

    http://www.countercurrents.org/2016/12/16/o-little-town-of-bethlehem/

    is UCC - United Church of Christ [US] - similar to United Church of Canada - but, different.

    ReplyDelete