Saturday, July 14, 2018

July 14: Making Canada a better place for billionaires

I was puzzled as I wrote the July 11 blog.  What was Trump doing with his attacks on allies? But a day of thinking it over made me realize nothing has changed.

1. Trump wants more spending on the American defence industry -spending by allies as well as by Americans. The purpose means nothing for defence itself. It's purely to stuff the pockets of American defence billionaires. And that sort of thinking has been common for most American presidents after Eisenhower who saw this coming, and who warned against the 'military-industrial' alliance.

2. As for his criticisms of Canada and Europe in NATO, this is a glimpse of the truth. Canada and NATO were never 'partners' of the U.S. They have always been subjects of the American empire. British business realized that early, as it lost its empire but has since tried to hang on by kissing up to the U.S. and  happily sending Brits to get killed in American wars.

The U.S. intends to rule the world and, right now, Trump is the emperor. He ignores international law. He invades countries illegally. He continues the illegal use of torture. He has, despite his tweets, increased poverty for all but billionaires in the U.S. He gives himself the right to invade nations for no obvious cause. He treats Latin America as a series of slave states - thus the flow of refugees to Texas.  He gives himself the right to dictate who other nations are allowed to trade with. All nations serve only to enrich American billionaires. That's not really a change of anything.

This is really an old pattern - but perhaps made more obvious.
Here's the real story on what spending more on defence would mean to Canada.

In reality, this is all nothing more than a scheme to put more money into the pockets of U.S. weapons billionaires.

Remember - Our service people did not fight and die in World War Two to make American weapons billionaires richer.

Don't worry. If climate change were any problem, our oil billionaires would tell us.

Making some sort of sense out of the Trump-Putin meeting.

Funny I haven't seen this story in our irving press.

The irving press is not the only medium that sensationalizes.

One might wonder, too, about the failure of ANY New Brunswick government to meet the intellectual development needs of our children. There is a  high rate of illiteracy in this province which means a serious lack of essential skills and the destruction of opportunity.  And its not the fault of the schools. It's the fault of parents who don't care and governments that don't care.

The wealthy hate the idea of governments being able to limit their powers. But they pay big bucks to governments that limit the powers of their workers.
The Naziis are back - big time. When the U.S. organized the overthrow of the elected government of Ukraine and replaced it with a pro-American government, it also restored the power of a Nazi movement that is over a century old in Ukraine.

And this next is just a break. In the Montreal of the 1950s and 60s, I used to occasionally drop into a bar while looking for a church. The bar was called, I think, the Sahara - and it featured a belly dancer named Fawzia Amir who was billed as a favourite of Egypt's King Farouk. (She was the mistress of a leading Montreal gangster. And the word was that she was Jewish.) But now I see that was not  unusual.

Quick. Update your Bibles for the REAL truth.

Actually, this is old stuff. The Christian churches abandoned Christian principles long ago. For the last several hundred years, they have been the servants of the wealthiest and most murderous people in the world. Think of that while listening to the sermon this Sunday. (It almost certainly won't be about our obsession with killing and greed.)

By the way, into the 1950s - and later - Jews were required to live in ghettos in North American cities as well as in European ones. In Montreal, I can remember the signs on apartments that said, as late as the 1970s, 'select clientele only.' (That meant no Jews, no orientals, no blacks.

I have further comments on this later in this blog.

Gee! Funny how the  irving press missed this story.

Democracy died a long  time ago in the U.S. Gee. It's a good thing our billionaires in Canada would never corrupt or in any way interfere with democracy.

Yep. Trump has eliminated poverty in the U.S. So pay no attention to those silly reports that 40% of Americans live in poverty.

How the U.S. has brought peace and democracy to Latin America.

Latin America is not being developed by Canadian and American capitalists. It is being plundered. That's why refugees flee to the American border. It's the only possible escape for them. If the U.S. were to treat Latin Americans with decency, there wouldn't be any refugees in the first place.

Don't worry about this. If it were true, Mr. Irving would be the first to tell us.

Another disaster that's going to hit us. And we certainly aren't getting (and won't get) any leadership on this from our billionaires.

US big business impoverishes, murders, exploits men, women and children all over the world. Then it blames them for becoming refugees.

God bless America. God bless American (and Canadian) billionaires. And God forgive Christians for being such a cowardly lot.

The July 20 edition of our beloved irving press has an item on the commentary page that is pretty awful stuff even by irving press standards. It was written by a podcaster (that's something resembling a blogger like me, but it operates on the web). And, like us bloggers, podcasters require no training and may well have no brains at all. (This podcaster, Bruce Dowbiggin, has won two gemini awards. Big deal. I've won journalism awards too and, trust me, they don't mean a damn thing.)

The title of this gem is "Canadians take U.S. military protection for granted." Aren't we lucky? In fact, since the battle of the Plains of Abraham, over 250 years ago, the only country Canada has needed protection from is the U.S. It maintained schemes to invade Canada at least into the 1920s - and probably still does have them.

And the reality is that the only country likely to attack Canada today is the U.S. as it runs into serious climate problems.

But, says Mr. Dowbiggin, Canada is cheating on its military spending, letting the poor U.S. carry the burden. In fact, the only major military spending we have needed in recent years is fighting American wars in Afghanistan, Libya, and training terrorists in Syria. Those were also wars that were illegal under international law and  had nothing to do with Canada.  Oh, yes. And we also sent 'peacekeeping' troops to Haiti to help the U.S. look respectable while destroying democracy in Haiti.

Nor does Mr. Dowbiggin seem to be aware that the reason the U.S. is pushing for defence spending is to open the door for an astonishingly corrupt American government and military to give lavish contracts to the American defence industry which, as General Eisenhower warned, was a threat to American democracy. (many billions of dollars have gone unaccounted for and the American defence industry has been the major supplier to Muslim terrorists in the Middle East and Asia.)

The U.S. defends us? Anyone who thinks that is either stupid or naive.

Then he goes on to tell us that American military, police and intelligence protect Canadian wheat ships from pirates in Asian waters. Yeah, sure, Bruce.

In fact, most piracy in Asia happens in the territorial waters of Singapore. And those waters are not patrolled by the U.S. They are patrolled by local navies.  As well, the pirates have no interest in Canadian wheat ships. Their targets are oil tankers.

The U.S. navy patrols international waters. And the pirates don't attack those because 1. most of their ships are too small and too lightly armed for work in international waters and 2. the time required to get back into hiding from the open sea would be fatal for the pirates.

Then Mr. Biggins quotes, of all people, The Fraser Institute, Canada's most notorious propaganda outfit financed by billionaires. (Not surprisingly,  the irving press just loves The Fraser Institute, too.)

Biggins quotes from it to 'prove' that Canada's health system isn't working, so Canadians are flocking to the U.S. for medical treatment. Come off it, Mr. Biggins. 99% (or more) of Canadians couldn't possible afford US health care. And U.S. health simply isn't available even to the majority of Americans.

And the reason the U.S. can't afford medical care for its people is because 1. Wealthy Americans DON'T pay more than a trillion dollars of taxes every year and 2. because so much money goes to what Eisenhower called the military-industrial complex. The U.S. is destroying itself by the greed of its billionaires and the corruption of its politicians. The real danger we face is that it will take us with it.

He then contradicts himself by concluding that we should note that we have excellent health care only because the U.S. pays for Canada's defence, and Canada doesn't.

Puh-lease. The U.S. protects our borders? Against???? The only country to threaten our borders has been the U.S. And you can bet that it will soon be threatening them again as the U.S. demands our water and our land. (In fact, the demand for our water has already begun.)

The reason we are strapped for cash is because our billionaires - just like the American ones - don't pay taxes. Would you consider a column on that, Bruce?

No. I didn't think so.

This is a remarkably shallow, ignorant,  madly biased piece of journalistic garbage. It is not possible for anybody to win a major war today. We would all be wiped out within hours. Defence spending is largely money wasted. The day that wars became impossible happened in 1945. And spending more on tanks and bombers won't change that. We have wasted all the years since 1945 in the absurd dream that we could end war by buying more and more powerful weapons. We haven't.  We can't.

And an irving press editor approved this trash column as the latest thing we HAD to know.

Why am I not surprised?

The irving press maintains its high standard with its big, front page story of the day. "8 year old boy buys SPCA a new lawnmower".

Yes. It's cute. Yes. It's admirable and it's touching. But it's also a partner of the old sob story. It tells us nothing we need to know about this city. It tells us nothing about what problems we must deal with. The SPCA story should be in the paper. But it should not be the big, front page story.

The irving press, July 14, and more journalistic garbage.

The big news is that a man who drowned 21 years ago has not yet been identified. We needed to know that.

Also in the need to know category are "New bar opens in familiar spot" and  "N.B. pizza joint expands to news city".  The news YOU need to know.

But the real stinker appears on the commentary page again. This one comes from an outfit called Canadian Global Affairs Institute. I don't know how many such institutes there are. Almost all of  then are far right wing propaganda houses financed by the very wealthy.  And newspapers eat them up as of they were real sources of information.

Typically, the intellectual pimps who write for them are given the title of 'fellow' - as if that means something. And some of these 'fellows', I regret to say, are professors.

I first ran into this in my early teaching days when I was approached by oil people to write nice commentaries about what sweethearts they were. Like most professors, I pointed them to the door. But, alas, some professors can be bought. (Without trying, I can think of one or two from New Brunswick.)

This commentary gem is "Experts support joining missile defence system". This system is why Trump wants Canada to expand its defence spending. So, like, we might be helpless if attacked by North Korea.

Get real. Kim Jong is weird. But he's not an idiot. Any such attack could not reach beyond our west coast. And such an attack would certainly get a response from the U.S. stockpile of 6,000 or so missiles. Kim Jong may look weird. But the idea he would initiate such an attack is absurd.

An American nuclear attack on North Korea is far, far more likely. In fact, Trump has already threatened it.

Then the good prof posts the kind of source he believes in. It's the MacDonald-Laurier Institute. In fact, that's just another of the billionaire-funded propaganda outlets that curse this country. And he quotes that the experts interviewed by this propaganda outfit were 90% in favour of creating a ballistic missile defence system for Canada. Of course they were. They were picked by the institute.

Get real. Any missile attack on anybody would be almost certain to trigger a nuclear war. And nobody could win that one. A BMD system would give us no protection at all. It would. though, cost us heavily, having a severe effect on spending for health care, education, social services. And it would mean a massive tax crunch. But not to worry. Our billionaires don't pay taxes.

So why is Trump urging it on us?

Think military-industrial complex. That's what Trump is really pushing. It has nothing to do with defence. It has to do with massive profits for American war industries. That's also the reason he's pushing hugely increased defence spending in Europe. It has nothing to do with strengthening Europe against a Russian invasion.

As it is, the U.S. is destroying American society with its massive military spending. But it's not enough. Nothing is ever enough to satisfy the military-industrial complex.

And why do the editors of the irving press publish this sort of mindless crap? It's because the only function of the irving press is to make this a better world for billionaires.


  1. Good column, Graeme.

    Luckily for most New Brunswickers, the Irving papers likely hold little sway. What's the rate of illiteracy?

    All these fake institutes with bought and paid for ex-academics sweating away tapping out right wing horse manure stories to please their masters are annoying. The "institutes" probably get tax breaks too, which means we all pay for some of their output. The Liberals run the MacDonald-Laurier one I believe. The vast majority are your bog-standard right wing billionaire "We're feeling the chill of imminent poverty" tripe.


  2. Officially, the rate of illiteracy in New Brunswick is about 20%. Unofficial estimates run as high as 50%.

  3. Graeme,

    have you ever wondered in this income inequal world of ours things like how long people stay at their crazy income level or things like that?

    herez something to cogitate over

  4. The pattern is worse than usual. We are watching almost all of the poor get poorer in their lifetimes. That's happening all over the world, and it's happening in the U.S., certainly. And the rich? Typically, they're born that way. Like the old aristocracy, their status has nothing to do with brains or hard work.