Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Cherokee-Memorial in Palestine

Believing that God supports you is empowering... but it's also led to horrible cruelty, theft & murder.

Nothing stopped U.S. settlers from theft & massacre of the Cherokee and other Native Americans. Though victims of systematic genocide, native peoples are still often depicted as savages. Resisting Invasion is condemned as Rebellion.

Israeli settlers now similarly dispossess local people. "Nation Building" is a wonderful goal, but most people of the world (and many in Israel) feel theft and murder unjust.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Propaganda for Breakfast

Reports of atrocities by the (now seemingly former) Libyan government leader are perplexing.

Quadaffi is blamed in most reports for many types of horrible outrages. But wait - what of when the devil is us?

When the Argentinian right-wing tortured, killed and 'disappeared' thousands of supposed troublemakers, capitalist-controlled media was largely silent. When photos emerged from Iraq's Abu Ghraib prison of torture by America's military, President Bush evaded blame.

Where's the outrage for genocide of native Americans? Old news? And to free slaves is reasonable, but it doesn't wipe the slate clean, fully pardoning atrocities.

Recognize we're fed predigested half-truths most mornings with breakfast. Food for thought.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Lunch with Hitler

Most people swept up in warfare would avoid brutality & violence. They're pressed to participate, under threat, to support one or another group.

Count your blessings if such choices are not forced on you -- when a bad choice may mean death.

We know ways to defuse rivalries and to minimize sectarian turmoil. But belligerent leaders and assorted parasites make trouble, seeking to scavenge gains.

Rejoice you've not had the misfortune of Hitler & his minions coming through your door, demanding lunch.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Greek Dinner

Greece has overextended itself. As the Greek government is unable to easily repay assorted (mainly private) lenders, pressure has developed for other European governments to bailout the Greeks. As I understand it, such support allows the Greeks further easy borrowing, at lower interest rates.

Finland has demanded collateral to invest in Greece, not simply promises of reform and privatization. Seems reasonable. But too many bailouts are tapping public funds, in often incestuous insider relationships.

The global financial system has become corrupted. One of the worst offenders is the US Federal Reserve, which has quietly been lending private banks huge amounts of funds with little oversight.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Libya as Stolen Property

Interfering foreigners are creating a new regime in Libya. We should hope it will be an improvement on the last government, but positive signs are few.

In declaring the right to wage war on Libya, the foreigners claimed to be protecting civilian lives. Just now, many civilians and low-level officials are suffering & being killed. The outside forces are not protecting civilians properly. Instead, the foreigners, their underlings, and Libyan patriots fight among themselves to divide Libya's wealth.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Trickle-Down Looting

Violence & looting are wrong. The looting now overtaking the UK is a black eye for every community.

But serious looting of far larger sums was imposed on the people of Britain by crony capitalism. The government spent £850bn of public funds to "bailout" private banks (link). The government shovels money to military armaments merchants and for overseas adventurism in distant lands. Past wrongs don't excuse present crimes. But don't be deceived - larger scale looting is now the norm for government & select businesses. We've been completely fleeced: Grand Theft by our rulers.

And pilferage is worse in the USA. All Common Wealth is appropriated by super wealthy opportunists; the rest of the people fight over crumbs.

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

No Reckoning

The United States of America suffered a sovereign credit downgrade last Friday by rating agency Standard & Poor's. Media's now full of dust & smoke, squawking, the sound of gnashing teeth, etc. etc. What's going on?

The basic affront is the United States of America has grown contemptuous of accountability. Having enjoyed unilateral freedoms for so long, the US government is accustomed to doing whatever it wishes. Public relations and the press are too often interchangeable, rewriting history, ignoring it, or diverting attention & outrage to new stories and memes.

US policymakers see the key lesson of the Vietnam War as marking a point to where one can stray but still reap the Nobel Prize (Kissinger), avoid trials for war crimes, and simply apologize with 'oops'...

The present economic meltdown owes much to the financial crisis of 2007, when the US housing bubble showed major banks and financial firms were insolvent. The US government rescued selected private companies with bailout funds, allowing the executive managers to remain at work. The crisis was blamed in part on regulatory failure and poor government oversight, but top public officials also kept their jobs. These corporations along with Bush, Obama and their cronies, fundamentally undermined our market system by gifting huge public assistance to a few private firms. Importantly, although such shenanigans resulted in global recession, the sovereign credit rating of the USA was not adjusted downward. In other words, this correction is very little, very late.

Friday, August 05, 2011

In Every Mirror, A Sucker

A great title to criticize cosmetics firms. But my target is finance.

Listen to the stupid pronouncements of market analysts & financial pundits -- we're easily suckered. "The market is responding to" is often simple hot air. The next day, or 20 minutes later, the same idiot belches another plausible scenario.

Feel like a puppet being jerked about? You should. Are you a step behind? Yes.

Talk of fears, correction, and jubilant investors serves to squeeze hefty commissions (or more) from common punters who move their funds. Often the "experts" are parasites, positioned to reap windfall profits from the gullible acting on their advice.

Two weeks ago we were told loans to Greece were in crisis, and that private lenders should be paid with European public funds. Germany forced the private banks to shoulder part of their own problem. But the public now subsidizes much of each repayment.

Now suddenly we're told Italy is in crisis. Other nations, recognizing it's "drink now or go thirsty" -- edge nearer to the money pot. Is it Big Capital playing us as dupes? Financial professionals care for us only if we bring them money, pushing for lax oversight & self-regulation without threat of penalty. All we are is dust in the wind...

Don't forget Kenny Lay & Co, the Bush & Cheney corporate friend...

Thursday, August 04, 2011

Cultivate Activists

I protest against war and the military industries as socially brutalizing, monetarily costly, and personally repugnant. I'm also opposed to exploitative colonialism, torture, and the US prison system.

What to do with such outrage? I write this blog, contact elected officials, and hope to cultivate activism.

Social activism is tough. It's easy to burn-out. Successes are short-lived and local. New generations, oblivious, inherit democracy or a world powered otherwise, and submit to authority. Mostly.

Science enjoys incremental progress over generations; evidence doesn't need continuous re-analysis. But social systems are continuously rediscovered & redefined, with the gullible hoodwinked by swindlers. Social concerns change; arrogant exploitation morphs to family concerns into aged infirmities.

Entertainment may be unfulfilling, but so is politics. Much competes for attention.

I try to balance the beauty of the world, and a natural peace, with activism. Simple redoubled effort will lead to grief. Nobody carries world problems long. Cultivate others and always model peace in daily life.

Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Bullies On Board?

Bully methodology has taken root in the administration of many institutions. When local government, schools, banks, the airlines & the transport police, etc., become coldhearted & brutal, they've lost concern with service excellence. Workers threatened with loss of job, operating under great stress, hijack too many social relationships. We must build healthy systems. Efficiency is not the key goal of living.

Monday, August 01, 2011

Rich Washington, Poor USA

Hundreds of America's millionaire politicians gather in Washington and decide:
  ---   great wealth pays no new taxes
  ---   less funds for social redistribution
  ---   you poor, comfort yourselves in hell.

The needs & pressing problems of Americans are a different world from the US Congress, who help the rich and the corporate donors. Lavish spending on military industries. Of all America's wealth, 27% is split among 90% of the people -- a shrinking share must support more & more (link). Congress refuses to raise revenue from cronies with comfortable wealth, making Americans less talented or less fortunate eat shit.