Monday, March 13, 2017

March 13: American soldiers? What American soldiers?

Today, my local paper, a part of the Brunswick News chain, has four pages  (count them, four) of Canada and World news. A page one flash is that the tiny province of Prince Edward Island is sometimes left off of maps. Next to it is another big story that New York city might get a snow storm. Then there's a big story about a local company that repairs old sewing machines. And a big, international story that a father and son are racing each other in a dog sled race in Alaska.

In fact,  the whole paper has no news at all. This is a newspaper whose sole purpose is to keep us ignorant of what is going on in the world. And that's pretty much the rule in our commercial news media.

But what's going on in this world is a massive change that has affected all of us - and will affect us a great deal more. Part of that change is reflected in the stories below.

Remember the pictures of American troops marching home after serving in Iraq and Afghanistan? Remember the movies in which they are all heroes? Remember the proud boasts that the US has a highly patriotic population and the best army in the world?
None of that has been true for twenty years. American men are not at all eager to 'serve their country'. Nor is the American public willing to accept the death toll of eternal wars. That's been true since Vietnam. That whole linking of war with 'serving the country' has been a fraud. Most of the reports we get about "American' troops are fraudulent.

The greater part of the American army is made up of hired thugs from all over the world. And thugs is the right word because they ignore international law; they routinely murder, rob and rape on a grand scale. Charges for that are rare - and convictions almost unheard of.

These happy murderers, thieves and rapists were (and are) the bulk of the American army in Afghanistan and Iraq and Syria. These mercenaries (who also work out of Canada) are far, far more brutal and murderous than all the Muslim terrorists we have ever heard of.

Murderers, rapists, and thieves - these are what America now means to most of the world.

God bless America. (I wonder if the mercenaries have chaplains. I bet they do.)

We live under governments that are really agents for big business. That's why we can be sure that as change happens big business will not be harmed. Instead, we will. When American business screwed up a few years ago, the American  government decision was that it would have to bail out big business to the tune of a trillion dollars. And that bill was passed on to the American people and their children and their grandchildren......

Ordinary people can and do die of hunger and exposure for their economic failures. But, under the propaganda influence of our news media, God forbid that a billionaire should have to pay for his own mistakes.

We are very, very close to a period in which we will desperately need governments that government for us. But we are nowhere close to having such governments. The Liberals and Conservatives are a dead loss in that respect. (Trudeau is actually supporting a trade deal with Europe which puts the greed of big business way ahead of the needs of average Canadians. And our commercial media are playing their usual game of telling us nothing about it.)

Canada needs to make radical changes. The Greens, though their intentions are good, seem to think this can be done without thinking much about politics of how it will be done.  And the NDP desperately needs to become again the party it used to be. ( Yes, it's possible to win an election by talking like Liberals. But rather more is required for dealing with our situation. Here in New Brunswick, the NDP actually had a leader whose thinking was so far back in the nineteenth century that he quit the NDP to become a Conservative. What was the NDP thinking of in choosing such a leader in the first place?)
I'm not at all convinced that God blesses America. The war in Syria was not begun by rebels or by the Syrian government. It was created by American oil billionaires to boost their profits. Even at that, the war isn't economically profit making because the cost of it is so  high. But, of course, the oil billionaires don't have to pay that cost.

Funny how Brunswick news missed this item.
And guess who is a major player in these crises. And guess why that "who" thinks it necessary to create the misery in this photo.  And guess who is making money out of this.

This might have made a good sermonette for the Faith Page of the Brunswick News. I guess that's why it never appeared there.
I found the language of this item a little overdone. But the fundamental message is important. For all the excitement about Trump, I don't think he's the problem. The problem is that the American systems of government and economy have collapsed. Trump is a symbol of that collapse, but not the cause of it. It's been developing for a long time - and Hillary Clinton as president would be at least as big a disaster.

The American systems have collapsed in the face of greed and a complete failure of social responsibility. And, soaked in nationalism and unthinking patriotism, Americans have little sense that things can be done differently.

In Canada, expect the Liberals and Conservatives to take Canada on the same ride  (as they already have). And hope for the Greens and the NDP to realize how much has to be done - and how little time we have to do it.
Despite his reputation, Obama was no peace lover. He used drone bombers far, far more often than Bush did. No western news medium has ever shown any interest in how many innocent people got killed. Now, trump is on track to set a new, world record in the use of drones.
Washington doesn't need to censor the news. For the most part, the commercial media will publish only what Washington tells them to publish. For this story, largely ignored by the commercial news media, only propaganda has appeared.
Washington is quoted as saying that the U.S. Troops in Syria are there only to help with the firing of  howitzers. So they're not engaged in an act of war.

1. To send troops into any country, even if they're there to hand out candy to children, is an act of war.
2. To "help" by firing howizers at the other side Isn't an act of war? So the US wouldn't mind if China showed up in southern California to bombard the Mexican fence?

An act of war is also illegal under international war unless you are threatened by violence from the other country. When did Syria threaten the U.S.?

Britain, in its imperial days, was exactly like the U.S. is today. Acting in response to the greed of the British wealthy, Britain freely invaded countries all over the world, murdered huge numbers, and looted labour and resources. And, like the U.S. today, its leaders came up with Christian reasons for their murder and theft. American leaders have been doing the same for centuries. Here's a sample.

"We are the ruling race of the world. . . . We will not renounce our part in the mission of our race, trustee, under God, of the civilization of the world. . . . He has marked us as his chosen people. . . . He has made us adept in government that we may administer government among savage and senile peoples." : Sen. Alfred Beveridge

Yep. It 's all part of doing God's will. God bless our business leaders, all men of Godly spirit.  I have read many such quotations from those politicians who serve big business. And I expect they might have been said by Hitler, as well.
Asia is commonly absent from our news sources. That's a big mistake. It is quite likely that, within 20 years, Asia will be the world's dominant region.  (That may explain Trump's sudden round of increases in military spending. It is quite possible that American business leaders want a war with China - NOW - before China gets too strong.)

I suspect it's already much, much too late to stop China. Despite its size and the massive spending on it, the performance of the American military has never been impressive. Its victories have all been in wars against countries that were smaller and poor - usually both smaller and poorer. And, since 1945, it's record has been a dismal one even at that for a country of such size and wealth. And, always a danger signal, it cannot get its own people to support its wars.

Yes, it could obliterate most of Asia with a nuclear attack. Unfortunately, that would also obliterate the rest of the world.
The next item is about greed in the U.S. But that same greed, on the part of people who are much the same as the American greedy, is simmering in Canada and Britain, among others.

Trump intends to destroy even the very limited health care plan the U.S. has. His intention is to privatize health care so it can been used, like everything else, to make the rich richer. We've seen movement in that dirction here in New Brunswick. Trump is also looking to encourage privatization of education - and for the same reason. The implication is that government exists to enrich the already wealthy - and then the blessing will come down on us. This is capitalism as understood by self-centred idiots.
I include the next one primarily because it's such a well-written analysis of a political leadership debate. There are not many journalists who can write such an honest analysis and do it in such simple language. But Karl Nerenberg is a pro among pros.

My own view is that what the speakers said made sense in terms of getting votes. But they fell way short in dealing the changes that are needed - and very very soon.
And here's one that involves the U.S., Canada, and Europe.
Here, in New Brunswick, we have a big story that has received scant attention from our press.

A string of salt-water beaches, important to the tourist trade have dangerously  high levels of 'fecal wastes', the nice way of saying pollution from toilets. In fact, by federal standards, the pollution is so high that the beaches should long ago have been closed.

The provincial, Liberal, government did nothing, said nothing. In fact, neither did the Conservativves when they were in power.   In fact, it probably goes back further than either of those governments - but nobody said a word. And the current government has given no hint that it is ever going to say anything - or do anything.

These are very popular beaches for the tourist trade - for trailer parks, campgrounds, local stores and restaurants.... But it's so bad that it's dangerous to go in the water - and even dangerous to walk on the sand. And the governments have known about it for a long time. That means the inspectors knew about it. And that makes it a strong possibility that the campground and trailer park owners knew about it.

However, we can only guess about the latter part because the Brunswick News has never gone beyond giving a couple of quick items about it. And that was two months ago. Since then, Brunswick News has shown no interest. Nor has their been much public interest, either.

That's quite an example of a cover-up press combined with a remarkably passive population. It's also quite an example of irresponsibility in dealing with an issue of human life.
The final item is one sent to me by a reader. Alas! It came with no source. However, I know that its point is quite true. It's also nice to see the word 'fascism' used in one of its correct senses.
A common cliché of protectionism is this one: the United States government needs to negotiate better deals for American companies.

It is time to call a spade a spade. This is fascism. Fascism is the economics of a government-business alliance. There should be no government-business alliance. The government should not be involved in business. Whenever government gets involved in business, it is always done to favor certain businesses at the expense of all the rest of them. It always involves a repression of decision-making on the part of individual buyers and sellers. There are no exceptions. There are always going to be a few winners and a lot of losers. But we do not see the losers. This is what Frederic Bastiat in 1850 called "the fallacy of the things not seen."

If I say this to the standard conservative, he nods his head in agreement. He is convinced that the government is up to no good when it intervenes into the free market. Then, a few minutes later, he tells me that the government should actively negotiate better trade deals for American businesses. In other words, his default setting on trade is fascism. He does not understand this. He does not understand economic logic, and he does not understand the meaning of the so-called business-government alliance.


This brings me to the idea that governments should negotiate tariffs and other quotas with foreign nations.

Why should any government agency negotiate in favor of any American business? What is the economic logic of this? This is one more example of government interference into the operations of the free market. Yet Americans who claim that they do not want government intervention in the marketplace loudly insist that some American trade negotiator has an obligation to get a better deal for America.

For America? For a collective? For all of America? How? The government cannot achieve this in any other field of economics. It is always discriminatory. There are always winners and losers. How is it possible for trade negotiators to get a better deal for all Americans? They can't. It's a myth....

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