Friday, June 30, 2017

June 30: William Grant Stairs......

....a Trudeau hero for Canada's 150th birthday. (six stories down.)

I found the story above intriguing because I worked for some time in Hong Kong when it was under British rule. I loved Hong Kong. But much of what is mentioned in this story was happening in the years of British rule. So how come the article doesn't mention that?

1. Hong Kong has no democracy? It had none under the British. It was ruled by a British governor Most of the daily news was about the governor. He acted without consulting the people at all. Sometimes, he would allow his secretary to act on his own as when the secretary banned a movie because he didn't like it. The government was arrogant, racist, and showed no concern for the people.

2. The only other group of any power was made up of the multimillionaires who controlled race-track betting. (Gambling of all sorts is very, very common in Hong Kong.) That group still has power.

3. It was common under the British to see whole families sleeping on strips of cardboard on the street. This included babies, and could stretch for blocks.

4. Just as today, thousands of people lived in wire cages of a size suitable for a dog.Sometimes the cages were stacked indoors. I've also seen them stacked in open fields.

5. Most apartments were tiny with, perhaps, two rooms. On the rooftops of many of the apartment buildings, people built wooden shacks to live in. Others lived in plywood shelters under stairways.

For all those thousands who lived in cages, on rooftops, under stairs or on strips of cardboard, I have no idea what they did for toilets or drinking water or food   - and it think I prefer not to know.

6. Hong Kong police today chase illegal  street vendors?  They always have.
7. A small number of very wealthy is benefitting from Hong Kong prosperity? They always have.

The problem of Hong Kong is not that China took it over. The problem is that rule by China is exactly like the 150 years of rule by Britain. Of course it is. Both China and Britain are capitalist countries.
And here's something about the local scene in New Brunswick, and about the family that really governs this province.

It reminds me of Hong Kong.
Yes,  climate change is happening. But the oil business still insists it isn't happening - and our Justin Trudeau listens to the words of the oil business. Perhaps the "special music" advertised for the Irving chapel will include a hymn to oil.

Let's focus. I suppose there were people on the Titanic who thought nothing was happening. Perhaps there were people who thought they had lots of time. We can't afford that because the change takes on its own momentum, and at that point it's too late for us to back off.

What can one think of people who are willing to risk the lives of billions so they can sell oil. Are they evil? Probably not. Even if they were evil, they would realize that this is suicide for them, too.  No. They aren't evil.

They're amazingly greedy and stupid.
We are back to the story that Syria used a chemical called sarin in an attack. I have no special information on this.  I have no idea how reliable the source is.
The story clearly says the sarin was used by Syria's Assad. I have no special information on that. Nor does the article. It came from an exploded shell. But the shell did not have a little sign saying "hello. I'm from president Assad." It could be from ISIS. It could be from the U.S. (Gee, would the U.S. government do such a thing? Sh. Go to sleep, my baby.)

Nor does any of this matter. What matters is that we don't have in this story is a general idea of the use of chemical weapons. As it's told,  Syrians are evil. We are good. Maybe. Sometimes. But we need the bigger picture to understand this incident. And the bigger picture is....

...just about everybody uses chemical weapons. And one of the  larger users of chemical weapons , probably the largest in the world, is the U.S. It has freely used, among others, Agent Orange, napalm, and depleted uranium. Years after their use, these continue to kill people and destroy crops. (And that does not include the non-chemical killers like the millions of unexploded cluster bombs lying in soils all over the world to kill people for many, many years to come.

Yes, the use of Sarin is wrong. But there is no solution in stories that just point the finger at the other side. If we're going to deal with this, we need to know the whole story.
Trudeau is playing word games. In fighting ISIS, he says, we will continue to block threats to our allies' shores and our shores.

Gee! So ISIS is going to invade Canada and the U.S. Better get ready.

By the way, blocking a threat is going to war. You block a threat by shooting people. That's a war. And nations are not supposed to fight wars without first declaring war. And Canada has not declared war.  Indeed, any hostile act to  another country is a war requiring a declaration from the Canadian government that it is going to war. Assisting and training troops can be an act of war. The reality is that Canadian is now at war with Iraq - and without the consent of the Canadian people.

Worse, we are now engaged in a war that has been going on for almost twenty years. In that time, ISIS has grown larger and stronger. American policy in the middle east has been a disaster that most of it will not recover from for generations. Every year of this war has made ISIS larger. Let's face it. Killing Muslims is not going to make them love us.

In fact, ISIS was created by western aggression against Muslim countries, aggression which has been going on for over a century. ISIS does not arise out of perverse Muslim thought. It arises out of our aggression and imperialism all over the Muslim world. Most Muslims are NOT jihadists. Our killing and plundering is what has created Jihadism.

(Hey. If we're so hot on stopping aggression, how come we didn't stop the American and Guatemalan aggression that murdered 200,000 Maya? How come we didn't stop the overthrow of the elected government of Haiti by the U.S.?

How come we didn't stop the U.S. killing of civilians in Panama>

Trudeau is pushing Canada into an illegal war. We will be led by the U.S. whose military record over the last 70 years has been one of the great disasters of history. Why is he doing it? Probably to kiss up to Trump.

I'm so proud to be a Canadian.

Oh, speaking of war, how come we aren't helping the people of the middle east to hold off American aggression?
Justin Trudeau would just love this story. It's about Canada sending troops to fight a war for the British empire - as Trudeau now wishes to fight them for the American empire. This kind of war is sort of a Canadian tradition. It's the kind we fought against those native peoples who were in our way.

There is no future for a Canada that is a U.S. puppet.
The following is too true. And guess where Justin Trudeau stands on it.
Recent evidence suggests we probably have less time than we thought to deal with climate change.
More news about the climate that isn't changing.

You tell'em, Justin. You just go ahead and build the pipelines and open up all the oil exploration you can.
And some bad news to watch for.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

June 28: Praise the Lord, and pass the ammunition.

Justin Trudea says that killing a person at 3.5 kilometres is something all Canadians should celebrate. Anyway, the victim was an ISIS extremist. At 3.5 kilometres, the sniper could tell this was an ISIS militant? Sorry. Telescopic sights aren't that good.

And I am damned if I will celebrate our killing of anybody.

1. You cannot shoot anyone in a foreign country unless you are legally at war with it. Canada is not legally at war in Iraq. (Nor is there any reason why it should be.)

2. The sniper could tell at 3.5 kilometres that his target was an ISIS militant? Please. And if he did, miraculously, see an ISIS militant at that range, Why couldn't he simply have told that to the people he was training?

3. ISIS is something created by the West in a reaction to a century of the Christian west killing Muslims, stealing their land and resources, and redrawing their maps to destroy the countries they had and to create new ones for western profit.

There's a reason we are getting shot at. It's not some form of cruelty that's a racial trait of Muslims.

Most Muslims do not agree with ISIS. But the west has built up so much hatred, it has been unable to defeat this reaction despite its massive use of force for the last twenty years. And we're not going to defeat it. We, for the trillions of dollars spent and the millions of lives destroyed and the tens of millions of people horribly displaced, have actually made ourselves more hated. That's not going to change by killing even more Muslims and creating even more enemies.

Our soldiers were sent to Iraq in a non-combat role.   Killing a person , no matter what the range, is not a non-combat act.  But Trudeau has been gradually sliding us into a war that has nothing to do with any Canadian interest. And we have a wimp of a prime minister at a time when we have to deal with a severely disordered American president.

Think about it. in seventy years, the world's richest nation with the most expensive military in history has not been able to defeat any major or even middle power. It can't even beat minor power Afghanistan which is not only much, much smaller, but is itself divided.

The world has never before seen a major power so incapable of military success as the US since 1945. The only way it can win is by a nuclear destruction that would end all humanity.

It is so profoundly hated and that even countries of the European Union are looking for an exit.

It's also leading us to economic disaster. The U.S. defence budget is now by far the largest in the world. It's wildly corrupt with much of that budget being spent to make billionaires richer, and to buy politicians. And it's mostly borrowed money. And Trudeau has signed on to raise our defence spending so we can all be victims of this theft.

We have not only utterly failed to impose western power on the rest of the world. We are also heading for economic disaster at the hands of capitalists who are too greedy to think about the implications of that.

So, no. I don't think I'm ready to celebrate a great shot by a Canadian sniper.
Moncton Times and Transcript headline for June 27. How much money does your doctor make? The Irving press always puts out useless stories. But this one must be a record. Except - possibly - it's the opening of a campaign to privatize medical care.

Or it could be a seriously retarded front page editor. It can be hard to tell with the Irving press.

But the real stinker is a   commentary, the third of series by Prof. Savoie of Moncton University, on the economic future of New Brunswick. Sorry, prof. Sorry, Moncton university. But this is crap and, frankly, it looks like propaganda to serve New Brunswick's richest family.

We need closer cooperation between the private sector and  the government? Hey, Professor Savoie, the private sector in New Brunswick OWNS the government. It doesn't get any more cooperative than that.

And we need greater efficiency because our government deficits are too high? How could a person who calls himself an economist not know that we have deficits because major figures in the private sector don't pay taxes? And how is it possible to write about the New Brunswick economy without mentioning the name of the family that owns most of it?

And he doesn't mention another reason we have a deficit is that we are forever kissing the asses of the weatlhy by handing them forgiveable loans, monster tax rebates, etc.... Got any stories about them, prof?

Then he says that history shows that private business does a better job of maintaining economic success than government does. Prof. Savoie, I'm a prof, too. And an historian at that.  I know of no evidence that private business does any such thing. In fact, we are watching the opposite happen as private business builds an ever-widening wage gap, creating unemployment and poverty in much of the world.

He concludes with the idiocy that private business people should not have to wait to have bureaucrats come knocking at their doors to deal with the economy. Prof. Savoie, are you so very ignorant of life in this province that you don't know that big business prefers to sit in their offices because they know the public sector will come running to them. Have you never heard of bagmen, the politicians who go chasing after corporation bosses to get campaign money? And this is when the presidents give the politicians their marching orders. It happens at all levels of government. How could an economist not know that?

Incidentally, this has been the history of New Brunswick since long before Confederation. At first, it was the local timber barons who controlled all the only jobs available .

This series has been a quite useless guide to anything. And, frankly, it looks to me as though professor Savoie is kissing somebody's rear end.

However, watch for Norbert Cunningham to write a column saying the series is brilliant.
Netanyahu of Israel depends on the support of ultra-orthodox Jews. They are a minority in Israel, and a very small minority in the Jewish world. But they are what keeps Netanyahu  in power. They are rigid, intolerant, and have no sense whatever of the rights of women. They are also grossly intolerant of Israeli Muslims. Most Jews around the world feel insulted and angry by Netanyahu's behaviour. (The Irving press hasn't noticed this yet.)

The following site has several stories illustrating this.
I have no idea whether the following story is true. It's possible that Assad is preparing to use chemical weapons.

 Every major and middle power (and some of lesser powers) has chemical weapons. The U.S. is a leadinig producer of chemical weapons. It used them on a lavish scale in Vietnam - notably the highly poisonous agent orange, and napalm which was designed to stick to human bodies so that they burned victims to death. Agent Orange still destroys vegetation in Vietnam, and causes horrible birth defects. It also used depleted uranium which is still killing people (yes, including women and children) today.

Our news media have never paid much attention to that. But - oh - an American president says Syria might use a chemical weapon, and our press clucks with disapproval. Why, it could harm little children. (So did Agent Orange and Napalm, but we didn't get excited about that.)

The big story in The Guardian is that Assad is preparing to use chemical weapons. And the tone of the story is "aren't those Muslims just terrible." Why, they kill children and babies and everything."

Yeah. So does napalm and agent orange and depleted uranium - and American bombers.
A realistic look at Canada. (don't even try to find it in the Irving press.)
Hersh is a very highly respected name in international journalism. But the news media are often unwilling to tell the stories he uncovers. Here's an example.
Here's more on the Hersh story above.

The has created such a mess in the middle east, it's hard to see  how it can get out. It can't win. All it has done so far is to make ISIS a movement that now covers a large part of the world.  But is has so destabilized the middle  east that an American departure could well lead to a complete breakdown of the region.
Oh, what a tangled web we weave....

In brief, we are very, very close to a general breakdown  in the middle east as Trump raises the stakes against Syria. Saudi Arabia, Quatar, Iran, Turkey, Israel, Iraq, Yemen and others are all involved in the manoeuvring for wars Trump seems to want. And Russia cannot simply back off. There's a high risk of a local  nuclear war - and a high risk of a world nuclear war.

The collapse of the American empire is bad enough. It may well get much worse.
And, yes, Trudeau will be ready to send Canadian troops when he gets the order.
Just take a sample of the greed and stupidity that has taken hold in the U.S.  The richest country in the world is working to destroy any possibility of health care for the millions who require it. The wage gap is growing, and the numbers of poor are increasing. Billionaires in the U.S.   (and Canada) are increasingly acting not a citizens of their countries but as people with no national oblications at all. They exist not a members of a society but as people independent of any society - and above any society.

Look closely at what professor Savoie says about his ideal relationship between business and government. There is no mention of the people in there. No. Big business is an equal, at least, to the government. In fact, it is above the government because it owns the governments. And it will continue to own them as long as billionaires can buy politicians.

(I remember the pride of the Irving press in a former premier who is very wealthy, and who was invited to the Bilderberg conference. This is a meeting for the rich and powerful to meet with politicians who like rich and powerful people.
What does an election vote mean in a world like that? Damn all. The very wealthy rule the world. And they, unlike us, get to tell the politicians what to do.)
Changing that is extremely difficult. And it's impossible in a province whose people are afraid to have an opinion.

Monday, June 26, 2017

June 26: Canadian hero kills----somebody....

Our news media haven't, as a rule, paid much attention to what caused the terrible high-rise fire in London, England. The cause was the much admired ability of capitalism to do things on the cheap - especially when dealing with the poor.

Isn't Justin wonderful? This means he's planning to rely on fossil fuels for 20 years and more. And it's an area where marine life is in real trouble.

Our Irving paper mentions  in its  last line of this story that Canadian soldiers in the region are not to be in combat. They are there only as trainers. As well, Canada has not declared war in Iraq. So that's not a war kill. That's murder.
Who did he kill? Soldier? Housewife? Child?  Who knows? Who cares? The important thing is it was a great shot.

Oh, and we now stand at risk of a terrorist attack in Canada in retaliation.   (And we'll say, "Aren't those Muslims just terrible?")

And we also run the risk of getting sucked in to one of the many wars the U.S. has lost since 1945. (No. The U.S. did not win in Iraq (except in our news media.) It is now profoundly hated throughout Iraq, so much so that it has had to abandon most of its grandiose buildings in Iraq. It also broke all its promises to help rebuild Iraq, siphoning the money off to government buddies.

I'm so proud to see Canada doing its bit. No doubt some village idiot will arrange a celebration when the Canadian sniper returns to Canada.
The excitement begins on the commentary page of the Irving press. Brian Murphy writes his usual column guaranteed to offend neither man nor beast. Nor to inform.

Then we skip nimbly on to Donald Savoie saying pretty much what he said last time about how New Brunswick got cheated by confederation.  And it was all done by big business and crooked politicians in Ontario and Quebec.   (Wow! That must have come as a shock. In New Brunswick, big business and politicians have never been corrupt.)

Anyway,  the federal government does send big money to the maritimes. Our naval shipbuilding programmes are testimony to that.   But, gee, that doesn't get shared much does it? I mean we had to pay the Irvings big money just so they would be noble enough to accept the contract.

And when Do we get to the part of the story where Mr. Savoie tells us how much  (or how little) the wealthy of this province pay in taxes?

We don't need scheming Quebeckers or Ontarions to make us poor. We have our own, home-grown schemers to do that. But I notice that Professor Savoie, in two, long columns, has yet to even mention the name Irving and what role it plays in all this. How discreet!

The reality is that New Brunswick had to join confederation because it was badly in need of trading partners once the timber trade faltered. The real purpose of confederation was to serve the interest of British investors who were looking at Canada as a shorter and quicker route to the China trade - and also looking to development of the west. New Brunswick had a place in that - but not a big one.

 Above all, confederation was essential to hand over very, very large sums of money from us to the railway builders to pay for the necessary railways.

Oh, on an amusing note, Professor Savoie says a strong central government is bad for us because big business  in Quebec and Ontario will use  it to cheat us.  Not to worry prof, we don't have to import big business and politicians to cheat us. We grow our own.
A long time ago, I had a friend who, at the age of eight, was released from one of Hitler's death camps. The war had ended. So he and the other prisoners were released into a field to, somehow, survive. Luckily, his older sister found him, and brought him to Israel. There, he learned to hate.

His hatred, vicious and extreme, was not for Naziis, but for Palestinians as he lived on land stolen from Palestinians. (I had another friend, years later, who grew up on land stolen from Palestinians and who joked about killing them.)
Now, the  hatred is spreading from Jews against other Jews. The Israeli government has deliberately favoured the ultra-orthodox minority, putting their religious rules into legislation to be forced on all Jews And to be forced on Israeli Muslims, of whom there are large numbers.

I don't blame Israel for that. The hatred and fear created by Hitler lives on among Jews, and will live on for many years yet, now manifesting itself as a hatred for Jews who are moderate in their religious values, and a hatred and a denial of rights for the large Muslim population of Israel.  (And, of course, for the Muslims of Palestine whose land is stolen on an almost daily basis, who are held down in poverty, and are premitted to have electricity only 2 and 1/2 hours a day.)

Hatred breeds hatred, and more with every generation. And it is now breeding hatred of Jews by Jews.
Take greed very, very seriously. We are living through a period of triumph of greed. There is a transfer of wealth going from almost all of us to the wealthiest one percent of the world's population. For the 99%, it means growing hardship, hunger, loss of opportunity and early death. And the wealthy don't give a damn.
The U.S. is now planning to privatize almost all health care. Many, many thousands will die early as a result of that. Here in Canada, the wealthy with the bootlicking support of the news media they own, are pushing their way into privatization of health care and of education.

Think of that next time you're listening to "special music" at the Irving Chapel. Thank of that the next time the half-wits at the chamber of commerce hold an expensive dinner to honour a "philanthropist".  (We praise the rich. I can't remember Jesus ever doing that.)

Professor Savoie has noticed our government deficits are getting higher. Too bad he hasn't noticed how much that is due to the wealthy avoiding taxes - and getting huge pay-offs from our tax money.
The Irving press hasn't paid much attention to the Grenfell Towers fire in London. But it's a major story. And it's taking Britain toward enormous change. Hint for the Irving press - check our fire safety regulations in New Brunswick. Follow the deep  thoughts of our city and town councils about what they're doing to ensure safe housing.
Special Ops. Wow! Seals. Exciting! It all sounds good.  But the American military has won only one  (very small)  war since 1945. And it seems to be taking a long time for the lesson to sink in. No military has much of a record of solving problems.
Oh, I know. India is far away. But what could happen to it is exactly what could happen to North America. In fact, it is what's happening to North America. World food production has not kept up with population growth. And it's not going to. Worse. We're destroying the only land we have to grow food on.

It's a good thing our billionaires are going to privatize health care, hurrying a higher death rate along.

By the way, I wonder if the Irving papers  have their crack team of investigative reporters checking out why our provincial chief medical officer had to leave. Could it have anything to do with our use of soil and plant chemicals? Nah. The Irvings would never allow something underhanded like that.
And something nobody likes to talk about.

Hint - don't look to the wealthy for any leadership on this.
The American social and political systems have collapsed. But don't blame Trump for it. He is a product of a terrible crash. But he did not create it. It's a crash that goes back almost to 1776.
I'm trying to add more sources to get a wider range. (The problem is there are a lot of sources out there to cover.) Here's one that calls itself conservative - but seems a lot more progressive than anything I have seen in the private news media.
To be fair, the war crimes listed below (in Yemen) are not just Saudi. They are also committed by the U.S., by Britain, and helped a little bit by Canada.
The next is a site that mixes the stock market and politics -     which all stock market reports should be about because there is very, very little separation between the stock market and politics.
The following piece is more strident that it should be - but, essentially, it's true. Russia is not a threat to the U.S. It's economy is way below the level of the U.S. economy. The only war it could possibly fight against the U.S. would be a nuclear one. And that would be to the advantage of neither Russia nor the U.S.
But the U.S. seems obsessed with provoking a war with Russia. And Canada, led by the gallant Justin Trudeau, has committed Canadian troops to be among the first killed in such a war.
The next story is about the U.S. attacks on Syria as revenge for Syria's alleged use of sarin in killing civilians. I don't know whether Syria used sarin or not.
But I do know that every country in the middle east has stockpiles of poison gas and chemicals. Every country. And they didn't invent it one at a time. They got it from our side. The U.S. has a long history of its own of using such gasses - as in Vietnam where it is still poisoning and killing people.
And here's some good news.

Of course, it loses some of its force in New Brunswick where Mr. Irving thinks it's more important to cut down trees and to spray them with chemicals.
This one is getting long. And I've been thinking  I should be considering adding material that isn't in any newspapers.

For example - why did the U.S. commit itself to such an expensive and losing war as the one with Iraq? And why did it repeat the act with a losing war against Syria? Why does it kiss up so much with Israel? (That was not true in the earlier years of Israel.) Why is it so eager to fight a war with Iran which is no possible threat to the U.S.?

For that matter, the wars with Afghanistan and Iraq were planned long BEFORE 9/11. So what were they all about?

The wars were planned by a group who became key figures to influence the Republicans well before four years before 9/11 . Their   group claimed to be in favour of the U.S. ruling the world and converting all countries to "American" values. It believed it was the will of God that America should do that. And that is what has murdered millions of innocent people, created over 80 million refugees, and justified continued plundering all over the world. It called itself "Project for the New American Century". It was, essentially, a new version of the killing and plundering of the old, European empires.

(The group still exists, though under another name.)

It needed an excuse for its wars. 9/11 was the excuse. But why did they hit the middle east oil states? It wasn't just  to control the profits from the oil fields - though that was a pleasant feature.

No. what lay behind this was an obsessive fear of Chinese economic power which would damage American billionaires. And to prevent that rise of Chinese economic power, they needed to control China's oil supply - which came from the Middle East. That's what Iraq is about. That's what Syria is about. The US needed the power to cut off China's energy supply.

And why had the U.S. earlier become such a buddy to Israel that it lavished enormous spending on Israel and allowed Israel to build a nuclear arsenal? Because it needed a reliable base in the middle east.

I'm not sure why the U.S. got involved in Afghanistan. It's given reason was phony. Afghanistan had nothing to do with 9/11, And the U.S. knew it. I suspect the reason maybe had to do with a route for oil transport to China, and getting control of it.

The U.S. has now fought over 70 years of wars, almost all of them losers despite having the the most expensive military in the world. The middle east (and much of the Muslim world) has been shattered by divisions and hatred created by those wars.  Politically, the middle east could not be a worse shambles.

There is no possible good outcome for the world in these wars - or in the continued rule of the U.S. by mutli-billionaires. There is no possible good outcome for Canada in being associated with this. (Yes, I know it's hard for Canada to detach itself. But the only alternative is for Canada to destroy itself.)

The U.S. is over. And it's not just Trump. The U.S. was built on capitalism, greed and corruption. That's why it committed mass murder of its native peoples. That's why it has invaded most of Latin America at least once. (Uncontrolled
capitalism, greed, corruption and mass murder are all part of one, big family.) And that's why almost all the news we get is propaganda.

And so I wait for my invitation to speak to the chamber of commerce.

Friday, June 23, 2017

June 23: The curse of living in interesting times.

In my last blog, I mentioned that the wealthiest 1% of the U.S. population now holds 71% of all the wealth in the country. There is a similar pattern in other capitalist countries. In other words, everbody else - 99% of the population - is getting poorer. And, since that wealthiest group,  for the most part, doesn't pay income tax, then government income is going to be seriously reduced at a time of great need. And it gets much worse.

If 99% of the people are poorer, who is going to be able to buy the products produced by the wealthy? Capitalism, very soon, will have impoverished the world and destroyed its own markets.

The result will be  (and already is) vast suffering - and violence - on both sides.
It should require no great thought to realize that people who would do this are not simply evil. They are stupid; and they are driven by an irrational greed. They are so greedy that they have set up a system that will destroy them as well as everybody else.

These are not geniuses. Nor are they clever handlers of money. These are just people so twisted by their greed that they are a threat to themselves as well as to the rest of the world.

A favourite theme of the Irving press is that the wealthy create jobs. They should. But they don't. Centuries of experience show that the wealthy create poverty. And they create it in a stunningly useless way by destroying their  source of wealth - the rest of us. A capitalism controlled only by the greediest and most foolish of us is the greatest threat facing us except, perhaps, a capitalism that creates wars without end.
My Friday newspaper has arrived. It has a news story from an "independent, non-profit " think-tank, The Montreal Economic Institute. In fact, most of these think-tanks are neither independent nor non-profit. Most of them peddle propaganda for billionaires. And they are funded by billionaires like the Koch brothers. A New Brunswick think-tank, The Atlantic Institute of Market Studies is the same sort of scum-bag outfit that is frequently cited in the Irving press.
In this report, the institute has conducted a study to 'prove' we should continue burning fossil fuels to power motor cars and trucks. And that fits in nicely with the thinking of Trudeau, Canada's  equivalent of a washroom attendant for billionaires.

Nothing  can better illustrate the  lying that has been normal in our private news media from the start.

Also in the news is the story that the Republican party in the U.S. is pushing a bill to effectively destroy health care for most Americans. I can remember such days from my childhood when neighbours and relatives suffered and died in their homes because they couldn't afford medical care. At the same time, the Republicans are cutting income taxes for the very wealthy (though this doesn't matter because the wealthy don't pay income taxes, anyway.)

The pressure is on for this in Canada.  ( Watch for news in your favourite think-tank.) There are no limits to the greeds of the very wealthy - or to their indifference to human  suffering.


The Moncton Times and Transcript, as usual, has no news about anything. That's quite a comparison to the coverage it first gave to the apartment fire in London, England, that killed more British civilians than terrorists have. Nobody yet knows how many died - probably over sixty - maybe much over.

And - guess what - the cause of the fire was the dangerous and illegal use of some building materials that are highly flammable, and that create fast-spreading fires.  And who chose those building materials? No. It wasn't terrorists. It was - you  know - entrepreneurs, members of the chamber of commerce, capitalists.
And they broke the law because it was cheaper to build that way.

Worse. There are hundreds of highrise apartments in Britain built of that same illegal material. It's a common practice of the heroes of - tah -dah - free enterprise.

Isn't it just terrible the way governments sometimes get in the way of these entrepreneurs?

Boy. Ya gotta watch them terrorists.

Meanwhile, the people of Moncton can rest secure in the fire resistance of their wooden houses.
There's a strong sense among the people of Britain that the wealthy and their Conservative party don't care about the fire of Grenfell Tower. And they're right.
While the New Brunswick Chamber of Commerce was spending big money on a dinner honouring Mr. Irving for a donation he made, this was happening in Africa.

Capitalism has created the hell that Africa has become. Clap, clap, clap says the chamber of commerce.
Here's another one on Grenfell apartments in London. It's very true that in our western societies  (and others) to be born poor is to be born without opportunity, to be powerless for life, to suffer far more physical and mental illness, and to die younger.

But, hey, why worry? Go to the Irving chapel not far from Moncton. Enjoy the exquisite gardens and sculptured trees. It's like the Garden of Eden, but better. Visit the Irving gravestones. They're so much nicer than that of the missionary murdered by billionaires in Guatemala, and buried in churchyard near to the Irving chapel, but not nearly so nice.

And, anyway, Raoul Leger's grave isn't set in a beautiful landscape with "special music".
It seems that Canada's prime minister has been colluding with President Trump to water down the Paris environmental accord. He denies it, course. But German sources insist he has. It would not be surprising. Trudeau has been weak on climate change, and strong on kissiing up to Trump.

The is no easy choice facing us. Consider this.

1. We are not friends with the U.S. We certainly are on friendly terms with a great many Americans. But the U.S. is not run by a great many Americans. It is run by a small number of very wealthy people. They deprive Americans; the use force against Americans who complain; they spy on Americans. It is not possible to be friends with people like that. They have invaded Canada on two occasions. If there were to be any profit for them, they would invade Canada again.

2. The U.S. is a power in severe decline. It thought, back in 1945, that it would, at last rule the world. It hasn't worked out.  It's not going to work out. As that lesson sinks in, American leaders will become more desperate, more ruthless.

3.Canada, long a colony of Britain, made only a lateral move in 1945 when it became a colony of the U.S. This is a status quite acceptable to Canadian big business which profits by integration with the U.S. But there is a price - and that price is in fighting the wars of American business. We did it in Korea, in Afghanistan, in Libya and (more than we've been told) in the middle east. We also have troops postings to the middle east, in Latvia, In Ukraine that are there not for any Canadian interest but to ensure that we we be sucked into more wars for the U.S.

There is nothing for most of us Canadians in this relationship.  But Canada's business leaders are committed to it.

Trudeau, instead of developing a course that is best for Canada ( a difficult process at any time) is committing us to being a northern puppet of the U.S.
Yes, I know the following article was published in Russia Times. But it was written by a U.S. Senator.

Our wars have not been wars against terrorists. They are wars that have CREATED terrorists.

All our wars are wars for billionaires because billionaires are the only ones who gain from them. The wars of the middle east are wars for the control of oil - no other reason. We're fighting 'bad guys'? Hey, if you want bad guys, you don't have to go beyond some of the 'very best    families' of North America.

Donald Trump, a  man of no great education in anything, a man who's greatest concern seems to be covering his bald spot,  has decided the world's leading scientists are wrong . There is no climate change. The Irvings, of similar scholarly capacities agree. I guess they don't know what damage climate change will do to their oh-so-sweet gardens at the Irving Chapel.

And, like Trump, they have the right to impose their selfish thinking on the whole, rest of the world.
No surprise here.
This story must be false because, as we know, Americans would never torture prisoners.
And here's some good news.
This is another story the irving press has had no space for.
The following is an interesting list of wars the US has fought from 1945 to  1989. Most were against much, much smaller and poorer countries. The number of this list is 47, but it does not seem to count acts of war in which the U.S. hired thugs to do the invading as 'liberators".

Nor is there anything beyond 1989. Nor does it mention wars that the U.S. described as humanitarian (as the destruction of Haiti.) Nor does it mention wars that were unofficial - such as attacks by drones. Nor does it mention U.S. training and equipping of terrorist groups such as ISIL.   Nor is there any nasty talk about trained killers (Seals) who have been sent out to assassinate the enemies of big, American business.  An up to date count would probably get us well  over a hundred.

God bless America, I suppose...but can we blame all this on God?
Someday, I shall have to write one of these blogs on a history of US wars since 1945, and the reasons for them. It's not at all what our news media told us it was.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Jun 21: More Insanity. More Greed. Less Time.

This is a long one because I  had a lot to get off my chest in the first half. If you find me boring, just skip to about half way down.

"During the so-called secret war in Laos(1964-1973), the US dropped the equivalent of a PLANE LOAD of BOMBS every 8 minutes for NINE YEARS straight!!! More than the bombs dropped on Germany and Japan combined during WW2. Laos is the most heavily bombed country in history! Even today, 80 million live bombs are still lying undiscovered beneath the soil and have so far  claimed 200,000 lives AFTER the war ended. These still undiscovered bombs were primarily from Operation Barrel Roll and Operation Steel Tiger which dropped 270 million cluster bombs just in one area. Cluster bombs are designed to open in mid air thus being able to spread their damage further."

Nobody knows how many were killed. During the regular bombing it was at least 200,000, mostly civilians. Then there are the way over 200,000 killed after the war was 'over".

This is not the world we told our vets of world war 2 what they were fighting for. And they certainly were not fighting for this wretched repeat of the middle ages whenj dukes and earls and lords ruled because their daddies had been dukes and earls and lords.

And our military certainly did not fight so that corporation bosses could get the power to demand mass murder of millions all over the world.

Picture those bomber pilots who destroyed a helpless Laos and Cambodia marching proudly now with all their medals and feeling pride at preserving 'Christian' values.

God bless America
Land of the free.
Stand beside her and guide her....

Sure. Blame it all on God.

This sort of thing is what gives Christianity and patriotism a bad name. And it has given me a day of thinking of the evil that we have become.

The U.S.  (and friends)  kills freely all over the world, so freely that nobody has a count. Drones fly out every day to kill. Some days they kill enemies of  the U.S. Some days, they just kill.
The New Brunswick Press today features the first of a series of articles on New Brunswick and its confederation with Canada in 1867. The author is a local professor and 'public policy analyst' who is much admired by the Irving press and its owner. His last, great triumph was a book on how the government of New Brunswick is overspending. He did it without a single reference to the wealthy of this province who avoid taxes (so that it's hard to afford public programmes like education and  health care), and who continually seek huge favours of tax rebates, forgivable loans, etc. Kiss. Kiss.

The first instalment of this series is pretty shallow stuff - and not entirely accurate. He speaks, for example, of governments in Ontario and Quebec working on behalf of their bIg business people to make them rich at the expense of the maritimes.

What the hell does  he think big business in New Brunswick does? And he uses this imagery of persecution when a far more important factor in maritime decline was geography. Nor does he mention the stranglehold that local business has always had on New Brunswick going back to the days of the timber barons.

Then he rises in triumph to say that he has asked people why we should accept federal taxes raised partly on shale gas from Alberta, but object to developing our own shale gas. This he calls a moral and economic question. And he says nobody can ever answer his point.

If so, he must be  hanging out with a pretty retarded crowd. We shouldn't and Alberta shouldn't because the planet is dying as a result of digging for shale gas. And, I dunno, I kinda think there`s a moral issue in that.  If Dr. Savoie wants moral issues, he might wish to discuss Canada's role in the mass murder of 200,000 Maya in Guatemala. Or he might not.

He ends with the statement that New Brunswickers are among the poorest people in Canada. He says he tells people they should trust the private sector to change that - and nobody has been able to tell him a better way.

That, Dr. Savoie, is because your ears are badly plugged up. It is the private sector which has made this a poor province as it bleeds us with pleas for tax forgiveness, for free loans....

Norbert Cunningham will probably write a column on how wonderful this shallow and even servile article is.. I can't wait to see the next three in the series.
On the good side, The Moncton Times and Transcript has 2 (count them 2) articles worth reading. Both are on the rise of temperature for this summer. And both agree we are facing a a summer of heat rising by about one degree ---and that such a rise is enough to be damaging and serious warning of what is to come..

But I don't think Dr. Savoie had time to read those stories. So bring on the shale gas. Morality demands it.
And here's a story about our forests (sent to me by a reader. And thank you.,) It's about the impact of private ownership of 'our' forests.

This is the province in which our chief medical officer raised concerns about the effect of agricultural chemicals on our forest and on us. So she was dismissed and removed. The paper never told us why.  Dr. Savoie never wrote a penetrating article on it.

But we know damn well why, and we know who gave the orders. Almost all of our provincial governments are corrupted by big business. But New Brunswick is far, far the worst one. We don't have a democracy. Both the Liberals and Conservatives are servile, and both have been servile for a long, long time.
And the NDP and the Greens are going to have to become a lot tougher if they want to do anything for this province. They people they have to bring under control are quite ruthless. And I'm not sure the province is salvageable.

This is a province in which people are afraid to have an opinion. They're scared of the Irvings as their ancestors were scared of the landowners back in the lumbering days. I think of those times in Quebec at the height of the separatist movement when opposing separatism could be very scary, indeed. But at the worst of if, I could speak to groups and tell the truth. And they would respond openly and honestly.

Not in New Brunswick. This is a province whose battle cry is a whimper.  In St. John, they breathe poisoned air - and thank Mr. Irving for it. Mr. Irving says he doesn't want to pay land taxes on vast holdings. And our elected representatives can't scamper fast enough to please him. (And a Dr. Savoie tells us all about  how Mr. Irving who has taken billions out of this province is creating jobs. If that is what he's tryingn to do (and it isn't), this is the worst job creation plan I  have ever seen.)

It's going to take tough action by the NDP and Greens - and I've yet to see that kind of toughness in either of them. And I really wonder how either of them can get the support of a population that is too scared to listen.
We are murdering and plundering all over the world on a scale Hitler could only envy.  
                                                                                                                      We put Canadian troops in danger to fight American wars as we once fought the  Boer War for the British. We have helped to create more than 8o million refugees, most of whom will never find a decent (or long) life. We have joined with the U.S. to murder and exploit the peoples of South America. A million bombs in the soil of Laos and Cambodia just waiting to explode are only a small part of the story.

We have practiced corruption, murder and plundering on a vast scale, and with much more to come. We have turned democracy into rule by a new, greedy and self-appointed aristocracy. We have allowed ourselves to become ignorant of the horrors we inflict on the rest of the world - and on us.
How the hell did we let this happen?
Just after writing the above,  I got this note from a clergyman.......

I asked a church, in a district suffering from poverty and social services to invite its membership to participate in a significant demonstration of resistance to the domination of the political and social landscape by the Irving patriarchs. The discussion was short. The consensus was against participation. The reason? So that the Irving family would not get annoyed with the United Church.

It has not been a good day.
Let's start with something intelligent from Haaretz.

(For goys and shiksas who read this, a goy is yiddish for gentile male. And a Shiksa is yiddish for gentile female. Oy vay means, roughly, omigosh. That can be emphasized as oy vay schmeer.

(My, I miss the Jewish community in Montreal. It was open to ideas. It wasn`t afraid to challenge the powers. It had a great respect for truth.)
The U.S. has, with its allies pursued policies in the middle east that lead straight to the great war that nobody will win. The American goal is that American oil billionaires should have control of all the oil profits to be taken out of the middle east.

This is of no benefit to anybody but the oil billionaires who tuck all those profits into their secret bank accounts, and who leave it up to us to pay for their wars.
Worse, it has destroyed the stability of whole regions as governments are destroyed and as countries like Israel, Egypt, Iran, Syria, Yemen scramble to survive and as countries like Russia and China feel compelled to move in - and most of Europe and Canada. U.S. foreign policy since 1945,  and especially since 2001, has been a disaster that has destabilized the whole world.

And this has been done solely to benefit the financial aristocracy that rules us.
And Israel, of all countries, has become a nation of racist persecution.
Watch ALL of this. This is what a nation  that is breaking down looks like.
Under international law, the U.S. has no right whatever to be in Syria - just as it had no right to attack most of the 70 plus countries it was attacked since 1945. Unless the other country attacks you, one cannot send in troops without an invitation from the other government. The U.S. had no such invitation from Laos, Cambodia, Haiti, Guatemala, Cuba,  Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, Syria - and no such invitation for its drones to invade and kill people in Pakistan and other countries our news media don't tell us about.

Since 1945,  the U.S. has been committing war crimes as bad as any that we hanged naziis for committing. And, on many occasions, Canada has joined in - as in AFghanistan, Libya, Irag, Haiti....

And we may now be paying one hell of a price...

The U.N. was created as part of a promise to our World War 2 veterans to prevent future wars. WE betrayed that promise from the start. On Nov. 11, we should mourn our veterans of war. And, oh, we should also mourn our betrayal of all we said they died for.
And here's a story about the climate change that us smart folks know isn't happening. You go right ahead with those pipelines, Mr. Trudeau. They create  jobs.
Most of the great empires of the past have killed their own poor, just as they killed millions of those they conquered. Britain, in its most glorious days, suffered massive poverty and early death. Trump is continuing this tradition in the U.S. by putting medical care out of the reach of the poor. The Guardian looks at this phenomenon in the light of the disastrous apartment buiiding fire in London.
Welcome to the real world where the western powers are the great supporters of Naziism. (For a hint of this, check out photos of the soldiers in today`s Ukraine. These are the ones on òur` side. You may notice that many of them have swastikas on their helmets. These are soldiers of the Ukrainian Nazi party that we have welcomed into the Ukrainian government.

It makes sense to the west because, despite calling his party a socialist party, Hitler was not a socialist, and there was nothing socialist about what the naziis did. Far from seeking control of big business, the Nazi party was a party of big business. That`s why Henry Ford and many, many other capitalists in Canada, the U.S., and Europe supported Hitler. He was their wall against socialism. (Much of what we have been told about that war is simply not true.)

Capitalists are still drawn to Hitler`s naziism.
This story probably won`t make our Irving press.
Expanding the war in Syria is insane, so insane that it risks a world, nuclear war. (It`s also illegal under international law.) But Trump is doing it. Watch for Trump to do it. Watch for him to demand Canadian troops. Watch for Justin Trudeau to click his heels and say yessir.

The U.S. is an empire in advanced decay. And that`s when they are most desperate and irresponsible.
Guess who your real enemies are.

I wonder where New Brunswick would come in this list. Probably lower than the U.S. because the wealthy of this province work hard for their money, too hard to waste it in taxes to help hungry kids.
Enough for today.

Oh - if you want a series of real horror stories, just google Canadian mining companies in Guatemala.
Our mining companies have a long history of brutality, exploitation, environmental destruction - and murder - in other countries. And they have had the full cooperation of Canadian governments in covering up.
Among those 'incidents' is involvement in the mass murder of 200,000 Maya.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Lots of insanity. Lots of greed. not much time.

The strong showing of the Labour Party leader, Jeremy Corbyn, in the British election came as a tremendous shock to the British news industry. Just about all of them had expected Corbyn to go down in flames. Instead, Conservative leader May, though she won a plurality, looks like the one more likely to go down in flames.

The following is a long and repetitive piece. But it makes an interesting point.
The commercial media may be losing their credibility as people turn to the web. They certainly deserve to lose it as the commercial news  media become outright liars or, like the Irving press in New Brunswick, sheets of trivia designed to keep people in ignorance.

Yesterday, in world news, Irving news carried FIVE, large stories about shots fired at Republican politicians while they were playing baseball. That's in addition to all the previous stories since it happened.

Then there's another big, world story. "Toronto women-only spa's 'no male genitals' rule ignites  transgender debate online. What's  happening in Yemen, Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan? Who gives a damn? Try this instead.

On the commentary page, we have a gem by Assisting managing editor Rod Allen who has a talent for writing pointless stories, mostly about himself, and with a ponderous, plodding humour. Like the weekly, Saturday commentary by a local lawyer/politician, Allen's is not a commentary at all. It's just a pointless, self-indulgent story.

The only exciting news in today's paper is on page 3. The Irving Chapel will begin its summer/fall series with a sermon about Father's Day. Yes, it will. Way to hit on the  tough topics, rev! The minister, of course, has a doctorate in theology. Nothing but the best for the Irving chapel. And there will be "special music", not just your ordinary crap hymns, nossir. Expect the best music money can buy.
Speaking of religion and confessions and stuff, I should say I'm a socialist. No, that's not the same as a communist. In fact, there has never been a communist government anywhere in the world. A communist society would  have very little government.  It would have to be a society of people working together in cooperation for the common good. That would certainly require a highly Christian society - and we don't have one. Nor, looking at the limpness of church  thought after 2000 years  are we likely to have one - ever.

If there has never been a communist, why do our journalists constantly refer to communism? Because they don't know any better. The word has nothing to do with mass murder, torture, police state.....  Anyway, you can find all of those in capitalist states all over the world.

So what is socialism? It starts with the needs of people. It starts with the assumption that people, all people, have equal rights. And the role of government is to protect their rights and to meet their needs.

That's not true of capitalism. It's starting assumption is that if we allow some people to get super rich, their wealth will float down like raindrops from heaven upon the place beneath. And that's rubbish. It has never been true.

The years of the British empire saw a tremendous rise in the wealth of major capitalists. But Britain, for most, remained a place of massive poverty and neglect. Much the same was true in Canada and the U.S. The only period of significant improvement came during and after World War Two. But that was a very brief blossoming that ended over forty years ago.

The wealth of the wealthy stays with the wealthy. Many of the wealthy make it worse by not paying any taxes at all. That's why government budgets often create serious deficits. It's not government wasting that does that.  It's private greed. And it helps to explain the rapid growth of a income gap between the very riich and the rest of us. And that's as true of Russia and China as it is of Canada and the U.S.

If it were true that creating an upper class based on extreme wealth then, despite what commentators in the Irving press might say, the wealth does NOT filter down to the rest of us. If it did, then countries like Congo and Guartemala and Haiti would be paradises instead of hells.

But the wealthy don't exist sprinkle wealth on the rest of us. The exist to take wealth from us, all of us, and to keep it for themselves. That's why the gap between the very rich and the rest of us has been  growing. At that, we're lucky. They kill people in other countries.

No.  I think the purpose of government is to serve us, not just the rich. I think we need controls on big business - like an other human activity. We need bigi business to maintain safe working conditions, adequate salaries, to pay taxes, and to get its nose out of government. And I think (know) that some fields are best run by government - like health care, like education.... Government should exist to serve all of us, not just the wealthy.

So I'm a socialist. I also know, as anyone above the IQ of an ant should know, that the New Brunswick Liberal and Conservatives exist to kiss the unattractive bottoms of billionaires. Well, to each his own.
Chief bum-kisser Justin Trudeau.
A great many Americans, probably most, willl believe the nonsense written by this politician.

They'll believe it because their media and their politicians have never told them the truth about the American record in Haiti. One of the most brutal national records is the record of U.S. treatment of Cuba. It helped in the legal punishment of a poor country for having the nerve to break away from French rule. In World War 1, the U.S. put Cuba under a  U.S.military dictatorship (so much for American democracy). The main job of the dictatorship was to keep the people in poverty to serve as cheap labour for American businessmen  (clap,clap, clap says the chamber of commerce). It then imposed a series of torturing and murderous dictators who were more brutal than the U.S. army dictators had been. The Cuban people existed to work long hours in terrible conditions at pay that nobody could survive on. There was no medical care. There was virtually no education. There was constant theft, rape and murder - by the police.

Castro, for the first time, made Cuba livable. Despite tremendous pressure from the U.S. - which included supporting an invasion of Cuba,  bombing Cuba, and blowing up a civilian airliner killing all aboard (almost none of which made our news media), Cuba won. Living standards rose. Schools were made available to all, and are free all the way through university.

But the U.S. wants to take it back to the 'good old days'. Yes, it is suddenly concerned about human rights. Nor will it occur to American readers that human rights in Cuba are a lot more real than they are in the U.S. The U.S., the country that not long ago slaughtered 200,000 Mayas in Guatemala is telling Cuba to improve its human rights.

And always remember how it is that is behind these statements. It's the big business people who own American politicians.
You still think that making the rich richer will benefit all of us?
I would not agree with this next writer that establishing socialism would end all wars. It would be a step in the right direction, though.
Watch for more on this topic. Europe is not going to settle for being a U.S. colony. Canadians, too, should start waking up before it's too late.
Journalists knew, or should have known from the start, that the Ukraine government in power today was put in place by American agents. The previous,  legally elected government was disposed of to make way for friends of the U.S. But no hint of that story has ever reached our mainstream. In the years since then, the fighting has not stopped.

In short, this was not a Russian plot. It was an American plot. And Canadian troops have just been sent to the region in case it goes out of control. Brilliant move, Justin.
A fire in an apartment building in Britain has killed far more people than the terrorist attack in Manchester. Who caused it? Probably the building owners who ignored safety precautions. The result was that more British got killed by their landlords than by terrorists. There are a few lessons in there.

So why have western news media which went ballistic after the terrorist attack been so  quiet after the landlord attack?
British prime minister Theresa May visited the site of the London high-rise apartments that burned with a high but still uncounted loss of life. But she refused to speak to any of the survivors. What a sweetheart! Of course, she has to be careful because it seems that certainly members of the government may have been responsible for the fire.
Why does the U.S. hate Iran? Because it went to all the trouble of overthrowing the legally elected Iranian government so it could impose a U.S.-appointed dictator of murderous and corrupt habits - the kind of guy oil companies like. And those ungrateful Iranians kicked him out and dared to form a democracy again.
Ukraine could heat up. And Canada is there. Why?

Incidentally, a major group in the Ukraine government is the founder of Ukraine's National Socialist Party which, like Hitler's National Socialist Party  (on which it if modelled), is no socialist at all. It is far right and racist, just as Hitler's was.
This one is not so much a news story as a lesson in how the world works. It's about how a popular make-up company flocked to support Hitler in France.
Sorry to be late with this. As I grow older and wobblier, this has to be expected.

The lesson, surely, from all of this is that we have very, very little time to act on climate change. And we can't act on when we're planning to be using oil for longer than the time we  have left. Nor can we do it while we're building all our decision making around the wishes of billionaires who understand only greed. And we certainly can't do it while we're fighting wars.

For a start, we  have to cut off the power that allows the wealthy to murder all over the world at no cost to themselves. And we can do that only enforcing real democracy by learning how to judge the people we elect to govern that democracy. It's not a matter of tinkering. I wish it were. It's a matter of profound change in our society. And we have very, very little time to do it.

So take the Irving press and stuff it.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

July 14: The big problem that the Irving press won't touch.

All of these stories are of climate change that IS happening. But the Moncton Times and Transcript has no room for this today. It needed the space for the big story that the Bill Cosby  trial will resume today.

Almost always trivial, the Irving press rarely touches on climate change - probably because Mr. Irving wouldn't like it. After all, he's in the oil business and, like the rest of the business, he's been downplaying the threat of climate change.

Ain't happenin' is the official word in the Irving press. Just think, the oil barons of this world, few of whom have scientific training of any sort, have decided that the world's professional scientists don't know what they're talking about.

That's common in big business as a group. Few big business leaders have dazzling educations, Certainly, for a group coming from so much money, they commonly have far less education in anything than one might expect. No, their wealth is based on inheritance more than brains. So climate change isn't happening.

But it is.

Thanks to the oil barons, we have thrown away some thirty years doing nothing about it. And there's a lot to do.

There will be refugees in the hundreds of millions, fleeing the drying up of farm lands. It's already happening in Africa. Expect more, much more and soon in Asia, South America - and the south western U.S.  Growing warmth in the Arctic and Antarctic with replace some of the farmland, but not much. And that will happen in a world with a population that is growing very rapidly, and is already running low on food. There will be wars, quite terrible wars, and mass slaughter of the starving.

And the reaction of the oil industry? Well, they've noticed the warming of the Arctic. But all it means to them is that this is another place to drill for oil. They're also hot on oil pipelines which take a long time to be profitable - so these great minds are planning to maintain fossil  fuel burning for decades to come.

How much time do we have cut back severely on fossil fuels? Well, we're already past the starting point by thirty years - with no significant reduction. Nobody knows how much time we have left. Many people who know what they're talking about suggest we have, maybe, twenty years to complete enormous changes. Maybe.

Are the leaders of the oil industry stupid? Greedy? It's  hard to say. They show signs of both. I mean, with their sandwich and coffee money safely stored in secret bank accounts, they could probably manage a drop in oil income while still living higher than the rest of us.

Whatever their intellectual shortcomings might be, they should realize that if we die of climate change, then so will they. Or maybe all that applause from the chamber of commerce has gone to their heads.

All of this, by the way, is what comes from generations of increasingly allowing big business to avoid regulation - to pollute, to poison, to dictate to their governments which wars to fight. Virtually all wars since 1945 have been fought to profit big business..  (As were most wars before 1945). The wars in the middle east are oil wars to let western oil companies get a monopoly on middle east oil. The U.S. has been fighting imperial wars to make the American wealthy even wealthier since the day the U.S. was founded.)

Capitalism can work. But, like all isms, if we allow to run wild, it will destroy all of us including (thought they haven't figured this out yet) the capitalists. Remember, being born rich does not necessarily indicate high intelligence.
To do this, we need to create the new world order we promised to those who fought in World War 2. But, instead of doing that, our business-owned governments chose to launch the imperial wars of the last seventy years.
Sorry, big business. Go fight your own wars. And pay for them.
On a related topic.....

You can count on the Liberals and the Conservatives to do nothing. And the irving press won't even mention it.
If I ever criticize Israel, I hear from people accusing me of being anti-semitic. (I guess they don't know that arabs are semites, too.) I wonder who they'll react to Haaretz criticizing Israel.


There are also many Jews who are anti-European Jews. I often saw this in Montreal when speaking to Jewish groups. Most Jews in North America and Europe are Ashkenazi. But there are smaller numbers who Sephardic. These are Jews who have lived in Palestine since the days of ancient Israel. And they have lived, largely, in peace and friendship all those years with their Palestinian Muslim neighbours.

They profoundly reject the Azhkenazi (European) majority in Israel who treat Palestinians, even those who are Israeli citizens, with contempt and restrictions. They reject Israel's unending theft of Palestinian land, and its enforcement of poverty on Palestine.

We might also pause to think about our, western role in all this.

We did NOT create Israel to give Jews a safe haven after the war years. The idea of an Israel for Jews originated among western gentiles about World War 1. And it was not intended to do them a favour. It was get rid of those who were in Europe and America. In short, it was a gentler version of Hitler's decision to end the Jewish question.

It was revived after World War Two because North America and Europe still wanted to get rid of the Jews. Canada and the U.S., in particular, did not want Jews.

Nobody had the right to hand over what was then Palestine to anybody. Most Christians today don't know that. But Jews have not forgotten.
The people who control the drones are, of course, patriots fighting for their country.
Big capitalism looks for eternal growth. But we can't have it. We have reached and perhaps are falling in our ability to feed the world population. We are threatening the survival of the planet with the out of control use of fossil fuels.
Who creates terrorism?  We do.
David Suzuki, one of Canada's most eminent scientists, used to be a regular contributor to our Irving press. He was superb on issues of climate change. I guess that's why they dropped him.
Britain could well be heading towards a break with its role as America's bumboy. Expect to see some of this in Europe, too. And Canada? Nothing will happen so long as Liberals or Conservatives form Canadian governments.
The U.S. has relied heavily on bombing as its major war weapon. It's highly indiscriminate and kills many civilians. But few countries can defend themselves against U.S. bombers, so the U.S. can kill without getting killed back.

By the way, for anyone who thinks war is glorious, I recommend a film I came across on Netflix. It's called Gallipoli.

Oh - the U.S. has attacked an estimated 70 countries since 1945. Can you guess how many countries have attacked the U.S. in that time? (No. Afghanistan did not attack the U.S.)
And Trump expands the disaster the U.S. has been making in Central America for over a century. And, of course, it's all the fault of the people of Central America.
There are two, huge problems on our plate. One of them is climate change. The other is to create something resembling the world government the UN was intended to be - an project deligerately destroyed by the U.S.

As a footnote, let's rethink the terms 'patriotism' and 'fighting for one's country.' In every nation I have ever heard of, these  terms are used to indicate glory. And if they really mean glory, then the Naziis who ran the death camps did it because they were patriotic and fighting for their country. Ditto for  terrorists.

Let's get over it. Actually, the reasons people serve in the military are many and varied. And we have a bad habit of labelling   everybody on our side as patriotic and glorious, and the other side are all evil. These terms are just used to manipulate us. Was it the  cowboys or the Indians who were being patriotic and fighting for their country? And, if it was both, what the hell can those terms mean?

Monday, June 12, 2017

June 12:a mad, mad world

Two views on Canadian troops now in Latvia. Note how the first one, in particular, draws attention to Russian 'aggression' in Crimea. In fact, though, this all began with the overthrow of the elected government of Ukraine -  by U.S. agents. And Crimea has a population that is largely Russian. So who's the aggressor?

Why is Canada putting its troops at such risk? Because Canada is a colony obeying its mother country.
Canada is raising its defence budget - again, because Canada is a colony and the empire wants us to raise it. It's the same reason that Saudi Arabia has just pledged an enormous defence budget. In both cases, Trump, it's because our imperial master, Trump, demands it. He says it will create jobs.

No doubt it will, though largely in the U.S. because that's the country that has a huge defence industry. We are also going to go into debt so that Trump can create jobs in the U.S. Of course, most of the American people won't see much of that money. It will go to the stunningly corrupt and corrupting leaders of American defence industries.

Canadian bankers have already had hundreds of meeting with  the new, Canadian government to rig deals. How many have you had?
Buctouche is a town close to where I live. The web carries pages about its wonderful chapel built by the Irving family and called, touchingly, the Irving Chapel. It sits in a great stretch of land which the Irvings have much improved since God knocked off on the seventh day. Grass, trees, bushes, flowers are professionally maintained. It's so much better than it was at Creation.  It's a major attraction for devout tourists in the summer when tourists flock to the services, admiring the splendour as they devoutly sip coffee and chat in the barn.

Nearby is the Roman Catholic church. It doesn't have professinal landscapers. Nor does it have a billionaire buried on its grounds. And, of course, it doesn't draw tourists. So it gets little attention on the web.

But it has the grave of a local man who didn't become a billionaire. (He became a lay missionary, and very few of them become billionaires.) He, along with large numbers of Catholic clergy and 200,000 Maya people was murdered by the Guatemala army with massive American help. Those impudent Maya had been complaining about American and Canadian billionaires who were keeping them in poverty to work in mines and on big business farms, and who were destroying the land and the waters as they did it.

Of course, billionaires don't do yucky things like murder people in the hundreds of thousands. They get their governments to do that.

Well, of course it doesn't attract tourists. I mean, it doesn't even have a barn where people can have coffee and chat.

John 11:35
Trump says, "Roll over". And Trudeau rolls over.

We're going to play a larger military role on the world stage? Yeah. Wars have always been a great way to solve problems.
Canadian news media seem to be paying little attention to South America, particularly Venezuela. The brutality and exploitation of that continent by American (and Canadian) big business could be building to a general crisis.
This can be a difficult read because of its use of terms we rarely see in our news media. But it's worth the effort. In particular, note the chart below saying where pro-ISIS tweets come from. Most are from Saudi Arabia.
Saudi leaders, like those of ISIS, seem determined to pull Islam back to a primitive and rigid form.
This is a clearer explanation of what Saudi Arabia is about. It's a sort of arabic counterpart to those 'Christians' who are admirers of Trump.
I wonder. Is it possible that our sub-concious guilt is what makes us allow Israel to do what it is doing to arabs in Israel and in Palestine?

In the 1930s and 40s and much later, Canadians and Americans were as anti-semitic as they come. We refused to accept Jewish refugeees before and, for several years, after the war. We often restricted jobs and housing for Africans, Chinese, and Jews well through the 1970s and later.

We are now being swept into a hatred of Muslims  that much resembles our old hatred of Jews. And Israeli Jews are starting to resemble - cool it and think before you begin swearing at me - Naziis.
I don't entirely agree with this next one. I think it's extremely kind to Trump. But - I also think it's a huge mistake to think that Trump (or the Republicans) are the only bad guys in this. We're watching the moral collapse of both parties - and with no third party in sight.
The whole, NATO world is turning to 'defence' spending as a substitute for having any national economic programme. The money spent will deepen the crisis of our social programmes while enriching, mainly, the already rich.
And then it will crash.
Al nusra killers were terrorists. Now, they're good guys.
A long read, but  a good one on how political decisions are made.
If Trump is a bad guy, it doesn't    necessarily mean that from FBI director Comey is a good one.
Britain has been stunningly murderous nation for centuries - all done to benefit the rich. The empire is mostly gone. But the murder continues, commonly under the wing of the U.S. government.
Canadians don't pay much attention to British politics any more. They should. Prime minister May won the election - but so badly that she might have been better off to lose it. The leader on the rise is socialist Jeremy Corbyn.  Canada's NDP should pay attention to that before it becomes just the tummy fat of the Liberal party (which is, itself, really a Conservative party.)
Socialism sounds radical? Well, we now have a capitalism which has plunged us into constant war, has inflicted murder, starvation and chaos all over the world, has sent increasing shares of the nation's money into the pockets of the about it over coffee next time your in the barn at the Irving Chapel.
Remember that Syrian boy in Aleppo who appeared on TV news as being saved by Syrian rebels  during the siege of that city? Within just weeks (rushing for an academy award) a film was produced that won in a 'special category' at the Oscar Awards.

It was obvious - or should have been  -  from the start that this was a propaganda stunt to raise enthrusiasm for the war on Syria. The boy was very dirty - as little boys often are. But there was no sign of injury. Was he a casualty of the Russian aerial attacks on Alleppo? It could be. Aerial attacks commonly have that effect on children. If fact, the U.S. has been the biggest killer of children from the air in the world for over sixty years. And it doesn't usually get them just dirty.

And the film Academy just happened to rush through a special category at the awards ceremony? And this just happened to be the winner?

The story was obviously a propaganda fake. And almost all our news media ran it as though it were a true story. And millions of Europeans, Canadians and Americans bought it because we've been conditioned to see the 'other side' as evil, and ours as good. That's what the real 'fake news' operates on.

We are suckers for propaganda news. As Pogo once said, "We have met the enemy, and he is us."
It would be good for more politicians to tell us what the news media don't.
We mourn the recent terrorist attacks in Britain - as we should. But have you noticed that Britain does not have refugees climbing in rubber rafts  to drown in the Atlantic as they try to flee the country? Our hearts go out to the dozens of British who were killed.

But not for the millions of muslims and others that we have killed, not for the millions we are deliberately starving to death in Yemen.....  

We shoot Muslims. They shoot back. And that shows how evil they are.
old joke.  Newspaper headline says fifty people killed in train wreck in Turkey. One of the dead is a Canadian."

Reader's reaction, "Oh, the poor man."

That's they way we think. And that's why it's so easy for billionaires to get us to fight wars for their profit - and even to make us pay for them.
And now, just a bit of news from New Brunswick.

I get a monthly paper from a nearby city in New Brunswick. It's only a single sheet. But it has more news in that single sheet that the Moncton Times and Transcript and the other Irving rags have in a whole month.

Among the earliest settlers of New Brunswick thousands of years ago were the Maliseet. They want to rename a river as "Wolastoq", meaning beautiful and bountiful river. That sounds like an excellent idea. It helps to restore our sense of the past and our connection with our native peoples.

At present, it's called the St. John River. And that doesn't raise memories of any kind.
Another story is about a mining company called Barrick Gold, a favourite among Canada's moneyed class. Two  women from Papua New Guinea attended its annual general meeting. They were there to represent well over a hundred women who were routinely raped by the mine's security guards.
Of course, the company refused to allow them to speak.

This didn't make the Irving press, either.

For more information about this news sheet, contact -
The Moncton Times and Transcript was its usual hideous self. What's most interesting about the first section is that all its news comes from 2 reporters in Moncton, and 3 reporters at a sister Irving paper. This look very much like a paper run on the cheap.

The editorial is the usual bit of local trivia. A columnist once wrote a column complaining about bad drivers in Moncton. So the editor pretty much copied it. Neither had done any research to prove anything.

Hey, you want scary driving? In Portugal, it's rare to see a car that doesn't have dents on it. In China, my driver drove with his lights off at night. We turned onto a highway. After a minute or so, he turned the lights on.

I saw cars, trucks, a bus, horses pulling wagons, a boy walking with a water buffalo, several men pulling hand carts.

Then my driver turned the lights off.

"Hey! Why did you do that"?

"The lights get in people's eyes."

There are two columns on our provincial government spending. Neither of them mentioned  the prime cause of that overspending. No. It's not the homeless. It's not the hungry. It's not loafers who don't want to work.

It's more likely the very wealthy of this province who don't pay taxes. It's also the friends of the government who get 'forgiveable' loans for their businesses. It's a huge industrial lot owned by the owner of this paper who got permission not to pay the large tax on it this year.

How much of this is going on? Ain't nobody talking about it. And the Irving press certainly isn't going to talk about it. The writer also quotes Frank McKenna who was a very popular  prime minister of the province. I cannot find any record of him ever being critical of the wealthy. And it quotes a pet professor who wrote a book on our economic situation. He, too, was D and D on the role of the wealthy in milking us into poverty.

Canada&World? There must be nobody starving in Yemen or anywhere in Africa. Nobody got killed in Afghanistan. Or Libya. Or Iraq. Or Syria. And there's no rioting in Venezuela. The new, British Prime Minister has announced her cabinet.  Read it and get excited. Something to discuss over coffee at the Irving Chapel barn.