Category Archives: Capitalism

Extremophiles – from George Monbiot

The “establishment” is fighting hard to maintain its exceptionalism, and it’s playing hardball against environmentalists.  This is one of the best Monbiot articles I’ve ever read.

Extremophiles

Posted: 24 Jan 2020 02:04 AM PST

Anyone seeking to defend life on Earth is now labelled an extremist. Yet the real extremists are those in power.

By George Monbiot, published in the Guardian 22nd January 2020

It’s not an “error” or an “accident”, as the police now claim. It’s a pattern. First, the Guardian revealed that counterterrorism police in south-east England have listed Extinction Rebellion (XR) and the youth climate strikes as forms of “ideological extremism”. Then teachers and officials around the country reported that they had been told, in briefings by the anti-radicalisation Prevent programme, to look out for people expressing support for XR and Greenpeace.

Then the Guardian found a guide by Counter Terrorism Policing to the signs and symbols used by various groups. Alongside terrorists and violent extremist organisations, the guide listed Greenpeace, XR, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, CND, the Socialist Party, Stop the War and other peaceful green and left organisations. Then the newspaper discovered that City of London Police had listed XR as a “key threat” in its counterterrorism assessment.

There’s a long history in the UK of attempts to associate peaceful protest with extremism or terrorism. In 2008, for example, the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) produced a list of “domestic extremists”. Among them was Dr Peter Harbour, a retired physicist and university lecturer, who had committed the cardinal sin of marching and petitioning against an attempt by the energy company RWE npower to drain a beautiful local lake and fill it with pulverised fly ash. ACPO sought to smear peace campaigners, Greenpeace and Climate Camp with the same charge.

The police have always protected established power against those who challenge it, regardless of the nature of that challenge. And they have long sought to criminalise peaceful dissent. Part of the reason is ideological: illiberal and undemocratic attitudes infest policing in this country. Part of it is empire building: if police units can convince the government and the media of imminent threats that only they can contain, they can argue for more funding.

But there’s another reason, which is arguably even more dangerous: the nexus of state and corporate power. All over the world, corporate lobbyists seek to brand opponents of their industries as extremists and terrorists, and some governments and police forces are prepared to listen. A recent article in The Intercept sought to discover why the US Justice Department and the FBI had put much more effort into chasing mythical “ecoterrorists” than pursuing real, far-right terrorism. A former official explained, “you don’t have a bunch of companies coming forward saying ‘I wish you’d do something about these right-wing extremists’.” By contrast, there is constant corporate pressure to “do something” about environmental campaigners and animal rights activists.

We feel this pressure in the UK. In July last year, the lobby group Policy Exchange published a report  claiming that XR is led by dangerous extremists. Policy Exchange is an opaque organisation that refuses to disclose its donors. But an investigation by Vice magazine revealed it has received funding from the power company Drax, the trade association Energy UK and the gas companies E.On and Cadent.

One of the two authors of the Policy Exchange report, Richard Walton, is a former police commander. A report by the Independent Police Complaints Commission said he would have had a misconduct case to answer, had he not retired. The case concerned allegations about his role in the spying by undercover police on the family of the murdered black teenager Stephen Lawrence. The purpose of the spying operation, according to one of the police officers involved, was to seek “disinformation” and “dirt” on the family, and stop their campaign for justice “in its tracks.”

The Home Secretary, Priti Patel, has defended the inclusion of XR on the police list of extremist ideologies. But it seems to me that people like Patel and Richard Walton pose much greater threats to the nation, the state and our welfare than any green campaigners. Before she became an MP, she worked for the company Weber Shandwick, as a lobbyist for British American Tobacco. Among her tasks was to campaign against the European tobacco control directive, whose purpose was to protect public health. A BAT memo complained that the Weber Shandwick team as a whole “does not actually feel comfortable or happy working for BAT.” But it was pleased to note that two of its members “seem quite relaxed working with us”. One of them was Priti Patel.

In her previous government role, as secretary of state for international development, Patel held unauthorised and undisclosed meetings with Israeli officials, after which she broached the possibility of her department channelling British aid money through the Israeli army, in the occupied Golan Heights. After she was less than candid with the prime minister, Theresa May, about further undisclosed meetings, she was forced to resign. But she was reinstated, in a far more powerful role, by Boris Johnson.

Our government is helping propel us towards a catastrophe on a scale humankind has never encountered before: the collapse of our life support systems. It does so in support of certain ideologies – consumerism, neoliberalism, capitalism – and on behalf of powerful industries. This, apparently, meets the definition of moderation. Seeking to prevent this catastrophe is extremism. If you care about other people, you go on the list. If you couldn’t give a damn about humankind and the rest of life on Earth, the police and the government will leave you alone. You might even get appointed to high office.

It is hard to think of any successful campaign for democracy, justice, or human rights that would not now be classed by police forces and the government as an extremist ideology. Without extremists such as Emmeline Pankhurst, who maintained that “the argument of the broken window pane is the most valuable argument in modern politics”, Priti Patel would not be an MP. Only men with a certain amount of property would be permitted to vote. There would be no access to justice, no rights for workers, no defence against hunger and destitution, no weekends.

In his Letter from Birmingham Jail, Martin Luther King, subjected to smears very similar to those now directed against XR and other environmental groups, noted “the question is not whether we will be extremists, but what kind of extremists we will be. Will we be extremists for hate or for love? Will we be extremists for the preservation of injustice or for the extension of justice?”

Good citizens cannot meekly accept the death of the living planet, as corporations rip it apart for profit. The moderation demanded of us is, in reality, extremism: acceptance of an economic and political model driving us towards unprecedented disaster. If seeking to defend life on Earth defines us as extremists, we have no choice but to own the label. We are extremists for the extension of justice and the perpetuation of life.

http://www.monbiot.com

Christmas 2005, a Prophecy

        (Voice from the other side ~burning woman~ )
[Yes, this was written in 2005, and every year since the truth of it has only shone brighter. The world as we of the West have enjoyed it, is passing as water through our fingers and nothing can hold back the winds that are sweeping it away]

What is it about “Christmas” that evokes such confused and contrasting feelings in people of the Western world? 

Certainly, it is not about some redemption from sin – Christmas gives rise to more “sin” than possibly any other time of year.  Certainly it is not about the story of a poor family in Judea 2000 years ago from which the Christian Savior or Christ purportedly issued.

What is so gripping about Christmas?  The hype?  The commercial lies so thick one can barely wade through them day after day?  Some distant hope for something better?  Something eternally stolen, ever hidden and ever replaced with artificial concoctions from the minds of gods, of rulers, of systems, and swallowed so eagerly by deluded, egotistic masses?

Christmas is the saddest time of the year for me.  But I know my feelings and I know what generates them.  It isn’t movies, TV, books, religious rituals, radio or garish store displays. 


It is the awareness of the monstrous lie Christmas has become and how it chokes all who try to swallow it by participating in it.  Particularly religious people.  Particularly those who claim to be followers of Jesus; of the Christ; the being, entity, person, prophet, divinity — call him what you will — whose “birth” Christmas is supposed to be all about.  (And please don’t remind me that Jesus was not likely born on Dec. 25, Gregorian calendar, if he even ever existed – I know that and that’s not the point.)


How in “Hell” I ask myself, did Christmas become such a time of debauchery?  Of gluttony?  Of revelry?  Of covetousness and cupidity in this post-Christian society? 

I was taught as a child that “Jesus” was the gift of God to the world, the gift of the richest person to the poorest.  I was taught that in turn, the rich of the earth were to share their possessions with the poorest.  I was taught that Christmas was such a reminder that such an act need take place regularly to maintain life’s balance. 
Maybe because where I originate the people celebrate this “gift” on January 6th and it did not then  entail the gross and crass commercialism so in your face here; maybe because it did not translate in piles upon piles of trashy “gifts” did I remember what I was taught.  And maybe, living here, in a pathetic carbon-copy world of “American Santaclawism” the message I got as a child resounds that much louder these days in hollow greed-swept outer malls where empty cans, plastic bottles, half-eaten Big Macs, cigarette butts, paper and plastic cups and tons of broken and torn packaging collect inside vending machines, along curbs and under cold, wet benches covered with the grimy film of diesel fumes from city buses… 

Yes, inflatable plastic figurines and fake icicle lights are out; decorated trees bleed to death in living rooms, ante rooms and dining rooms.  Yes, the jolly fat man (who reminds me of the utterly evil, utterly depraved baron Harkonnen of Dune) is out and about, promising more goodies to the rich, more junk foods to the obese, more whatever to whomever will spend their last overdraft dollar… and collecting money for “the poor” after it is laundered by the official charitable organizations…


At Christmas, a “celebration” that belongs primarily to the richest segment of earth’s people, as many as always, and perhaps more, people will die “out there” and their pain will never be felt, will never be known, will never be acknowledged, neither by the churches, the charitable organizations, the politicians  nor, heaven forbid, the Media.  They will pass away as clouds that give no rain.  Empty, hollow laughter will sound for a few moments all over this Western World, not knowing that it too is passing, just as the dying poor, the “Lazarus” types who died at the door of the rich man. (ref: Luke 16: 19-31, New Testament, the Bible)


Tonight I give a prophecy — in full realization that no people, no collective, no nation, has ever appreciated the prophet, for such a one always comes at a time of ending, not to make change – such is not the purpose – but to warn (and such warning is always so damned inconvenient!) — and this is the warning: this Christmas will not generate as much happiness as the last for merriment seekers.  Next year’s will be far less happy.  And after that?  Even for those who can afford to hoard and to lord,  there may not even be one.


Many more small businesses will fail as this year passes.  Christmas will not bring the expected and needed revenue.  The largest greed-based corporations will last a bit longer for they still have the fat of millions of slaves to eat or burn – but not as much as they’d like their greedy share-holders to believe.  All of them are bankrupt, no matter how much money or power they claim to hold.   


It is the end for this society.  The world of the rich is corrupt unto death.  The world that worships money and mindless pleasures, whatever the cost to life, is finished. 

And why?  Because compassion is scorned; because the real spirit of caring, giving and sharing is gone from most human hearts and the world is split between the billions who go about naked and hungry and the millions who wear the emperor’s new clothes. 

Those who sow nothing must ultimately reap nothing.  Those who sow the wind (resource wars today) must reap the whirlwind. 

The Gathering

(A simple story with some questions at the end…)

[short story… by  ~burning woman~  ]

The Ancient surveyed the group with his mind.  “I see we are all gathered – let us proceed.  Agenda, please.” 

Orija closes her eyes and intones: “This Great Gathering, ninth of a series of ten, is called to decide the fate of the Sol system in which lies a planet called Earth which has been of concerns to Gathering for some years now. This meeting will address those aspects that lie within our jurisdiction.”

“Very well.  Please begin.  I recognize Volarian Mosl as the first delegate.”

 “The Volarians are, hm, quite uncomfortable with the energies emanating from the Sol planet called Earth.  Without going into details already well known to this august body, we propose a terminal solution before the discomfort spreads further.  It is known to us that some Belgelians have offered limited space folding capabilities to a segment of Earthian humans who claim descent from those known to us as the Nibiruans.  As a result we have been forced to strengthen our shields against the possibility of a sudden eruption of Earth humans — whom we consider to be corrupted beyond redemption –within our space.  The situation among my people is volatile as we have not had to deal with outer world aggression in long ages.  Even our oldest mages cannot remember the days of war.  We are asking, once more, that this Gathering do something definitive to resolve this issue.  We do not wish to wait for another Gathering.  If nothing is done now, our space guild will take action as it sees fit to protect both our space and our trade routes.”

“Thank you Volarian Mosl.  Your position is clear to us.  Who else wishes to express thoughts on the Earthian problem?”

 “I, Jessik, ambassador for the autarch of Narssis wish to express our thoughts on the matter?”

 “Yes, ambassador Jessik, you may speak freely.”

 “Thank you.  I have a question to pose to the gathering.  Regarding the Earthian humans, as a species evolved on only one world, with limited intervention from outer world peoples, can it be said here, before this august gathering, that over the time we have watched them, they have been freely given all the necessary information needed to move in a direction,  or should I say, to develop in a way consistent with that of the rest of the Galactic family?  Can any Earthian claim that we, in some way, failed to give them all the necessary support to develop their minds and their hearts in accord with the Galactic aim of cooperation and mutual support for the sake of life?

 “This is of paramount importance to us Narssisians as adjudicators of the Galactic Code.  Should Earthians discover the workings within the Galaxy once they leave their planet, they may be instructed by some to put in a planetary claim that critical information was withheld from them and  further claim that whatever crime they could to be charged with, such as genocide or planeticide, would not apply since they were ignorant of the basic requirements of the Galactic code?”

 “The question has been heard and entered.  Would the Angels respond to ambassador Jessik’s question?”

“We are the Angels of Aglamar” responds in perfect unison a chorus of voices from unseen entities scattered throughout the Gathering, “and we will respond to the question truthfully. 

 “Since the beginning, the Earthian human species has been observed, guided, taught and shepherded by the very best of our specially trained Guardians.  Many went and lived on the Sol planet Earth as teachers.  It was not unexpected that the earlier Guardians would be treated unfairly and unkindly by the fearful, hate-filled creatures.  It was however quite unheard of that this treatment would continue and intensify.  After waves of persecution of those who heard and obeyed the teachings of the Guardians, it was decided not to send any more.  We chose instead to contact Earthians through the use of thought forms, awakening empathy in some of them.  It was our thought that Earthians would be more likely to listen to their own.  But again experience gained on other worlds failed us here.  They did not listen.  They have grown increasingly belligerent with the development of their modern technical skills.

“They used the knowledge brought to them to develop an inhuman form of technology that has rendered them insensitive and brutish.  What limited knowledge of the good we sowed among them over the millennia was apparently and for all practical purposes, lost, or deliberately discarded.  Few there are of Earth who today understand even a little of what life is about and we have plans with the Galactic Space Guild to attempt a rescue of this remnant. 

 As Angel Guardians, it is our intent at this juncture to withdraw ourselves from any further involvement with that species of humanity.  Sadly we conclude they are lost.  We regret to so inform the Gathering.”

“Ah, thank you Angel Guardians of Aglamar.  The darkness of sorrow clouds our thoughts on this matter.  Do we wish to continue this Gathering?”

 “Representative Weill-Straat from Qobel.”

 “Yes, representative.”

 “Qobel resents the implication that Earth is of no value.  We have put much energy to develop a plan for adding Earth to our interplanetary trade franchises.  Qobellian trade ships are orbiting the planet, out of the range of their scanners and shielded, of course,  awaiting the results of several delegations sent secretly to many of the greater Earthian trading houses which they call Banks and Corporations.  As always we are advocates of free choice, therefore free trade. 

“We believe that the Earthians are uniquely adapted to engage fully in interplanetary trade and understand its function better even than some Qobellians, to our shame.  There is a native trait in the Earthians that renders them immune to any suffering their trading may bring to life, including the life of members of their own species.  They understand the value of trade and the necessity of sacrifice to further its reach.  In fact, one of their most admirable traits is their willingness to sacrifice any number of lives for the benefit of trade and to go to war to protect and enhance trade on their world.  To us, the Earthians demonstrate the only hope for further advancement of civilization as we have developed it on Qobel. The wish of Qobel therefore is that we be given a free hand to fully interact with Earthian trading houses.”

 “Thank you, representative Qobel.  Is there anyone else here who wishes to address this issue?”

 “Yes, I would please.  My name is Lisa Echabar.  I am, huh, was, from Earth.”

 “Lisa Echabar from Earth.  You may address the Gathering.”

 “I had wished to say something profound on behalf of my world but after listening to the delegates, I am afraid my voice will seem rather small, frail and distant.  Perhaps even confused.  Yes, I am confused.  I wish to speak for Earth but everything said here about the people is, sadly, quite correct.  They have been given all the knowledge needed to live up to the demands of the Galactic code.  I know because my tribe lived according to the code and we were happy and healthy for long years.  It was because of our adherence to the code that my tribe was enslaved and finally destroyed.  Earth was an abundant planet under the rule of the code.  No one ever needed to go without either food or shelter.  It was known, and it is known, even to the technos, that peace is better than war – but never quite as profitable.  It was, and is, known to all that health is better than disease, but also not as profitable.  It was, and is, known that cooperation is superior to aggression, but again, not as profitable. 

“I have a complaint to voice at this Gathering and that is, when the predator/prey concept was surreptitiously introduced to Earth, where were the Angel Guardians then?  Did you not know that such a concept would bring horror upon a world designed originally to be a simple paradise of loving interaction between all the species of life upon it?  Or did you know but choose to do nothing to prevent this deadly poison from being brought to us? 

“I will tell you what happened to my world and to my people.  Both were given free will and free choice much sooner than they were able to understand their implications and responsibilities. The freedom came before the knowledge was given.  So it turned to lust and degradation.  When the knowledge was finally introduced, it was too late.  The poison was burning in every heart and every mind.  Only those scattered in small tribes in deserts, mountains or small islands on the seas escaped for a time.  But it came to them also, and when it did, they died by the millions.  I myself was a victim of the technos. 

“Perhaps it is not entirely the Earthians’ fault that they are as they are.  Perhaps they are not redeemable, and certainly this Gathering cannot pay heed to Belgelian and Qobel desires to take advantage of their inhuman trait, their lack of empathy and their innate greed.  Better to let them destroy themselves and cause their planet to simply go to sleep under them, holding back her seasonal bounties until all surface life is gone.  Perhaps that would be the most compassionate thing to do. 

“To bring them out of their world at their current state of understanding would be to plunge the galaxy in endless wars.  To allow them to proliferate more would be to increase the level of suffering the many must endure to support the luxuries of the few.  There is no balance on Earth.  What love there is, if it can be called that, is of a sexual and predatory nature. 

“Since those of us who were willing to demonstrate a better way; who would have made a difference, are not wanted on Earth and since the Angel Guardians have decided to abandon their efforts on behalf of those who were once my people – but are no longer – I don’t know what else to say.  I am not condemning; I am not accepting.  I am simply stating.  Please understand I do not seek redress  or justice for myself in this.  I only wished to share my awareness and experience.  May this Gathering act wisely in this grave matter.”

“Thank you, Lisa Echabar, ambassador for Earth.  Your thoughts are felt and understood by the Gathering. A vote to decide the fate of planet Earth and its life will be taken by authorized representatives of the council at the next, and last, Gathering.”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Earth humanity, known as Homo Sapiens is a very ignorant and smug species.  That such as the above could actually be taking place, seems of no consequence here.  That the planet itself is showing signs of serious stress and possible environmental collapse is of little consequence. What matters is business as usual, let the consequences be borne by others.  That over 30,000 innocents die each day of preventable causes is acceptable collateral damage for the sake of free trade.  “The spice must flow” as the spacing guild navigators are fond of saying in Frank Herbert’s Dune novels.  Whatever the cost, resources must flow to the factories, and the goods must flow to the stores and from thence, to the homes to be turned into garbage and effluent.  That such garbage and effluent require the living sacrifice of 30,000 innocents – mostly babies and young children – each and every day, is cool; not a shocking revelation but just more “so what, there’s too many people on the planet anyway;” crass justification for the piratical profit from imposition of sanctions and maintenance of deadly endless wars.

Do we possess the knowledge to make our world into a paradise but simply refuse to do so?  Are we without empathy for those who suffer and die because of a system we support for our selfish ends?  Are we doomed; an irredeemable, violent, vicious, mindless species?  Is there no longer any choice, or are we unwilling to pay the price required for change? 

And what is that price?  What does life demand of us?  Of me? 

Now, who’s going to be the first to tell me to get into the spirit of Christmas?

 

What Price the Life of One Earthian Baby?

“If you do not specify and confront real issues, what you say will surely obscure them. If you do not alarm anyone morally, you yourself remain morally asleep. If you do not embody controversy, what you say will be an acceptance of the drift of the coming human hell.” – C. WRIGHT MILLS (1916-1962) American sociologist

In real dollars, how much is an Earthian baby’s life worth?

I was going to post just that question and see what sort of response, if any, it generated.

But I need to fill in some blanks.  The question has haunted me for long and tiresome decades. I know that the killing of an Earthian child is worth a lot of money. I also know, based on the several million deaths of children and their supporters in this century’s endless wars alone, that “the world” or let’s call it “civilization” is totally OK with that particular aspect of the slaughterhouse business of war.

Not convinced? Where are the peace activists? Where are the anti-war protesters? Where is the kind of in-your-face war news as finally helped expose the blatant, pointless, genocidal war in Vietnam? Better yet, where are you?

Has war become such a normal venture that it no longer raises any questions of morality or justice? Has it become just another video game?

So let me, once again, use this post as a vehicle to ask, why isn’t every Earthian changing their murderous patriarchal belief systems in favour of compassion? What’s wrong with choosing to be a compassionate person? What’s wrong with turning against a social system that promotes the murder of even ONE INNOCENT AND HELPLESS CHILD FOR MONETARY PROFIT?

I’m personally disgusted with this Earthian race. It doesn’t have to engage any of the social evils it currently accepts as the price of doing business. If it comes to knowing right from wrong, well, excuse me, but what are all those books for? Why have an official education system if it can’ teach the most basic requirements for admittance to the human race? Why have a written history if it’s to be endlessly mocked and misused?

The “Teachers” warned me against this people’s ways. They explained, in detail, that Earthians were pseudo-humans and most likely to fail as an experiment in higher consciousness. I had difficulty with their insistence at first but no longer. I see it now. I see how people, ordinary people who probably think of themselves as normal, mostly right, mostly OK people, are comfortably in bed with the System and quite willing to aid, abet, protect and even fight for it, and comfortable with the death of that baby as de facto necessary so the numbers can keep on rising; so the rich lords and masters keep getting richer; so the war mongers can keep on winning their election bids.

I see the fall of man in all of this. I see nothing being done that can change the disastrous course that the vast silent, ignorant and irresponsible global majority has WILLINGLY CHOSEN to take.

Sure, you can vote ‘til the cows come home and I guarantee this: you will only see things get worse.

Why? Because you condone the sacrificial killing of one innocent baby.

That is an unforgivable crime.

You would not forgive a pedophile for doing it. You would not forgive a drunk driver for doing it. You would not forgive a mass murderer for doing it. You would not forgive any one individual for doing it, even if he, or she, was given a state permit for doing it

So why should “you” who constantly and knowingly participate in the premeditated murder of one innocent child; you who is willing to pour trillions of tax dollars into weapons of mass murder of innocent children, expect forgiveness?

There will be none.

How does that saying go? “The axe is already at the root of the tree.”

Crazy post, yeah, but however it is shaken, I’m not the one who is insane for writing it. I would post it even if I knew every “follower” was going to unsubscribe. I’m tired of Earth.

 

The Enemy Within: Trump vs. the Deep State

A perfect time to post this message from Chris Hedges. I agree that with or without Trump, the path of imperial downfall and associated evils is unavoidable. Only a spontaneous, nation-wide violent revolution can change the course of this slice of history. Think Germany 1933, when Hitler was made chancellor. At that point, anyone could have been a Hitler. The time to prevent totalitarianism and ensuing bloodshed would have been a couple of years before and it would have required another bloody revolution. Likely Germany, then France, would have joined the Soviet Union. International banksterism and ascendant US corporate power wasn’t going to let that happen. They aided and abetted Hitler. Today they are aiding and abetting two ascendant powers: China and Russia as America is being abandoned to become the wasteland of the empire. Be that as it may, let’s look at what this article has to say.  Any highlighting is mine. (Sha’Tara) 

http://www.darkmoon.me
PUBLISHED ON TRUTHSEEKER
By Chris Hedges

Abridged by Lasha Darkmoon with brief commentary
November 11, 2019

(191111-The Enemy Within: Trump vs. the Deep State)

Is Trump an enemy of the Deep State . . . or is he secretly working for it?

“Trump committed political heresy when he dared to point out the folly of unchecked militarism. He will pay for it. The war between the deep state and Trump began the moment he was elected.” — Chris Hedges

Our democracy is not in peril. We do not live in a democracy. (It’s the image of our democracy (that) is in peril.)

Trump’s most unforgivable sin in the eyes of the deep state is his criticism of the empire’s endless wars, even though he lacks the intellectual and organizational skills to oversee a disengagement.

The deep state committed the greatest strategic blunder in American history when it invaded and occupied Afghanistan and Iraq. Such fatal military fiascos, a feature of all late empires, are called acts of “micro-militarism.” Dying empires historically squander the last capital they have, economic, political and military, on futile, intractable and unwinnable conflicts until they collapse.

They seek in these acts of micro-militarism to recapture a former dominance and lost stature. Disaster piles on disaster. The architects of our imperial death spiral, however, are untouchable.

The clueless generals and politicians who propel the empire into expanding chaos and fiscal collapse are successful at one thing—perpetuating themselves. No one is held accountable. A servile press treats these mandarins with near-religious veneration. Generals and politicians, many of whom should have been cashiered or put on trial, are upon retirement given lucrative seats on the boards of the weapons manufacturers, for whom these wars are immensely profitable. They are called upon by a fawning press to provide analysis to the public of the mess they created. They are held up as exemplars of integrity, selfless service and patriotism.

LD: The trendy phrase “deep state” appears to be the latest euphemism for international Jewry and their elite non-Jewish collaborators in the big corporations and military-industrial complex. These include the generals, bankers, corporatists, lobbyists, intelligence chiefs, government bureaucrats, technocrats, evangelical Christians, and the fawning presstitutes of the main stream media. All these gentile sycophants of Big Jewry have one thing in common: they are all passionate Zionists for whom the state of Israel is sacrosanct. They would rather see America go up in flames than suffer the loss of a single acre of stolen land in Occupied Palestine. [LD]

(I would caution getting all twisted up over the author’s use of “Jewry” and “Jewish” in this context. This is not a lesson in political correctness, this is an exposé of anti-life elitist collaboration. Substitute “Zionism” for “Jewry” and problem solved. – S’T) 

After nearly two decades, every purported objective used to justify our wars in the Middle East has been upended.

The invasion of Afghanistan was supposed to wipe out al-Qaida. Instead, al-Qaida migrated to fill the power vacuums the deep state created in the wars in Iraq, Syria, Libya and Yemen. The war in Afghanistan morphed into a war with the Taliban, which now controls most of the country and is threatening the corrupt regime we prop up in Kabul.

The deep state orchestrated the invasion of Iraq, which had nothing to do with the attacks of 9/11. It confidently predicted it could build a Western-style democracy and weaken Iran’s power in the region. Instead, it destroyed Iraq as a unified country, setting warring ethnic and religious factions against each other. Iran, which is closely tied to the dominant Shiite government in Baghdad, emerged even stronger.

Then there is the fiasco in Syria. The deep state armed “moderate” rebels in Syria in an effort to topple President Bashar Assad, but when it realized it could not control the jihadists—to whom it had provide some $500 million in weapons and assistance—the deep state began to bomb them and arm Kurdish rebels to fight them. These Kurds would later be betrayed by Trump.

Next was Yemen. The “war on terror” spread like a plague from Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and Libya to Yemen, which after five years of war is suffering one of the world’s worst humanitarian disasters. The financial cost for this misery and death is between $5 trillion and $8 trillion. The human cost runs into hundreds of thousands of dead and wounded, shattered cities, towns and infrastructure and millions of refugees.

Trump committed political heresy when he dared to point out the folly of unchecked militarism. He will pay for it. The deep state intends to replace him with someone—perhaps Mike Pence, as morally and intellectually vacuous as Trump—who will do what he is told.

The removal of Trump from office would not threaten corporate power. It would not restore civil liberties, including our right to privacy and due process.

It would not demilitarize the police or champion the rights of the working class.

It would not impede the profits of the fossil fuel and banking industries.

It would not address the climate emergency.

It would not disrupt the warrantless surveillance of the public.

It would not end extraordinary renditions, the kidnapping of those around the globe considered to be enemies of the state.

It would not halt the assassinations by militarized drones.

It would not halt the separation of children from their parents and the warehousing of these children in filthy, overcrowded conditions.

It would not remedy the consolidation of wealth and power by the oligarchs and the further impoverishment of the citizenry.

The expansion of our prison system and of black sites throughout the world, sites where we torture, would continue, as would the gunning down of poor, unarmed citizens in urban wastelands.

Most importantly, the catastrophic foreign wars that have resulted in a series of failed states and wasted trillions of taxpayer dollars, would remain sacrosanct, enthusiastically embraced by the leaders of the two ruling parties, puppets of the deep state.

The impeachment of Trump, despite the enthusiasm of the liberal elite, is mostly cosmetic. The entire political and governmental system is corrupt. Corporate lobbyists write the laws. The courts enforce them. There is no way in the American political system to vote against the interests of Goldman Sachs, Citigroup, AT&T, Amazon, Microsoft, Walmart, Alphabet, Facebook, Apple, Exxon Mobil, Lockheed Martin, UnitedHealth Group or Northrop Grumman.

We, the American public, are spectators. An audience. Who will be seated when the game of musical chairs stops?

Will Trump be able to hold on to power?

Will Pence be the new president?

Or will the deep state elevate a political hack like Joe Biden . . . or, God forbid, Hillary Clinton?

And what if the deep state fails?

The war between the deep state and Trump began the moment he was elected. Former CIA Director John Brennan and former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper—both now paid news cable commentators—along with former FBI head James Comey soon would accuse Trump of being a tool of Moscow. Intelligence agencies leaked salacious stories about “pee tapes” and blackmail, plus reports of “repeated contacts” with Russian intelligence. Brennan, Clapper and Comey were quickly joined by other former intelligence officials. Their attacks were then amplified by former senior military leaders.

The Russia conspiracy, after the release of the Mueller report, proved to be a dud. The deep state actors, however, were re-energized by Trump’s decision to pressure the government of Ukraine to investigate Biden. Trump, this time, seems to have given his deep state enemies enough rope to hang him.

The impeachment of Trump marks a new and frightening chapter in American politics. The deep state has shown its face. It has made a public declaration that it will not tolerate dissent, although Trump’s dissent is rhetorical and ineffectual.

The effort to impeach Trump sends an ominous message to the American left. Its resources to destroy those on the left are nearly inexhaustible.

There are no internal or external checks on the deep state.

The deep state will further expand the social inequality that has thrust half of Americans into poverty or near poverty, strip us of our remaining civil liberties and feed the rapacious appetites of the military and the war industry.

The resources of the state will be squandered as the federal deficit balloons. The frustration and feelings of stagnation among a disempowered and neglected citizenry, which contributed to the election of Trump, will mount.

There will come a moment of reckoning, as there has during the last few days in Lebanon and Chile. Social unrest is inevitable. Any population can be pushed only so far.

Trump, in the end, is not the problem. We are.

And if the deep state fails to rid itself of Trump it will, however reluctantly, use him to carry out its dirty work.

Original source: Truthdig

“Trump, if he manages to survive, will get his military parades.
We will get, with or without Trump, tyranny.”
— Chris Hedges

Man’s Last War

 – a poem by Sha’Tara

The world hasn’t changed much
Since so long ago I was born, when I happened
For no reason it would seem, without hubris.
I learned to talk, walk, listen and observe
With the sense it all had to mean something
In the end.

The world was cruel to me when I was young
Though I didn’t know that then, it’s what is
To a child life is the norm, the form.
There was much hardship, harshness
Little tenderness, and it seemed dangerous.
One could get used to tenderness
And the world I knew hated it with passion
unchecked.

Life is cruel they said without apology,
Why not, they’d just survived a world war
Knowing naught but blood and losses.
I thought, yes, I have to be bold, and tough,
I too must survive, there’ll be another war
And I must know how to fight it; must know
My enemy before he knows that I know
I will beat him.

No, the world hasn’t changed, not at all.
The same people lie, cheat, rob and rule,
The same people suffer and die, their blood
Lubricates the scythe blindly sweeping
To leave fodder and dying stubble in its wake
To be ploughed.

Yet something did change, has changed:
A new World War is being fought
No longer man against man but once again
Man against nature-she fighting her protracted way
She can never lose. Man in his hubris
Still believes he can win this war and it will be
As he never, ever, won any of his other wars.
Earth withdraws her bounty.

Man’s motto remains against, never with
Rashly, brashly he spreads his nets,
His barb wire, his jet trails, his towers,
His stacks, his chimneys, his warehouses
His poisons, his noise, his armaments and bombs,
All to be measured in corporate profits for
The rich to get richer.

Civilization teeters on the brink of extinction,
The skies are deeply troubled, changing colours,
Glaciers melt, calve, fires burn, smoke rises:
Death, death, death! Booms and cackles
The Lord of Greed, the God of man, terminator
Soulless and heartless

The last man stands on his funeral pyre
Proudly made of planet Earth’s skin
Sure he’d won his very last war against life.
*********
He raises his fist to the soured heavens,
Claiming his last divine imperative thinking
I have destroyed the environment, I have killed
All that sustained life. I leave my boot print
On a weak, worthless and dying world, hah!
“I Am become Death, the Destroyer of Earth,
I will be remembered, halleluiah!”

Embarrassment of Riches-George Monbiot

When it comes to being a voice for our stressed and possibly dying natural environment, George Monbiot’s has no equal.

Please read on. (Hopefully all the links are working as this is a copy, not a reblog. They do work at this end, I checked.)

______________________________________________________

Embarrassment of Riches – monbiot.com

Embarrassment of Riches

Posted: 20 Sep 2019 01:22 AM PDT

For the sake of life on Earth, we should set an upper limit on the money any person can amass. (My emphasis)

By George Monbiot, published in the Guardian, 19th September 2019

It is not quite true that behind every great fortune lies a great crime. Musicians and novelists, for example, can become extremely rich by giving other people pleasure. But it does appear to be universally true that in front of every great fortune lies a great crime. Immense wealth translates automatically into immense environmental impacts, regardless of the intentions of those who possess it. The very wealthy, almost as a matter of definition, are committing ecocide.

A few weeks ago, I received a letter from a worker at a British private airport. “I see things that really shouldn’t be happening in 2019,” he wrote. Every day he sees Global 7000 jets, Gulfstream 650s and even Boeing 737s take off from the airport carrying a single passenger, mostly flying to Russia and the US. The private Boeing 737s, built to take 174 seats, are filled at the airport with around 32,000 litres of fuel. That’s as much fossil energy as a small African town might use in a year.

Where are these single passengers going? Perhaps to visit one of their superhomes, constructed and run at vast environmental cost, or to take a trip on their superyacht, which might burn 500 litres of diesel per hour just ticking over, and is built and furnished with rare materials, extracted at the expense of stunning places.

Perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised to learn that when Google convened a meeting of the rich and famous at the Verdura resort in Sicily this July to discuss climate breakdown, its delegates arrived in 114 private jets and a fleet of megayachts, and drove around the island in supercars. Even when they mean well, the ultrarich cannot help trashing the living world.

A series of research papers shows that income is by far the most important determinant of environmental impact. It doesn’t matter how green you think you are. If you have surplus money, you spend it. The only form of consumption that’s clearly and positively correlated with good environmental intentions is diet: people who see themselves as green tend to eat less meat and more organic vegetables. But attitudes have little bearing on the amount of transport fuel, home energy and other materials you consume. Money conquers all.

The disastrous effects of spending power are compounded by the psychological impacts of being wealthy. Plenty of studies show that the richer you are, the less you are able to connect with other people. Wealth suppresses empathy. One paper reveals that drivers in expensive cars are less likely to stop for people using pedestrian crossings than drivers in cheap cars. Another revealed that rich people were less able than poorer people to feel compassion towards children with cancer. Though they are disproportionately responsible for our environmental crises, the rich will be hurt least and last by planetary disaster, while the poor are hurt first and worst. The richer people are, the research suggests, the less such knowledge is likely to trouble them.

Another issue is that wealth limits the perspectives of even the best-intentioned people. This week Bill Gates argued in an interview with the Financial Times that divesting (ditching stocks) from fossil fuels is a waste of time. It would be better, he claimed, to pour money into disruptive new technologies with lower emissions. Of course we need new technologies. But he has missed the crucial point: in seeking to prevent climate breakdown, what counts is not what you do but what you stop doing. It doesn’t matter how many solar panels you install if you don’t simultaneously shut down coal and gas burners. Unless existing fossil fuel plants are retired before the end of their lives, and all exploration and development of new fossil fuels reserves is cancelled, there is little chance of preventing more than 1.5°C of global heating.

But this requires structural change, which involves political intervention as well as technological innovation: anathema to Silicon Valley billionaires. It demands an acknowledgement that money is not a magic wand that makes all the bad stuff go away.

On Friday, I’ll be joining the global climate strike, in which adults will stand with the young people whose call to action has resonated around the world. As a freelancer, I’ve been wondering who I’m striking against. Myself? Yes: one aspect of myself, at least. Perhaps the most radical thing we can now do is to limit our material aspirations. The assumption on which governments and economists operate is that everyone strives to maximise their wealth. If we succeed in this task, we inevitably demolish our life support systems. Were the poor to live like the rich, and the rich to live like the oligarchs, we would destroy everything. The continued pursuit of wealth, in a world that has enough already (albeit very poorly distributed) is a formula for mass destitution.

A meaningful strike in defence of the living world is, in part, a strike against the desire to raise our incomes and accumulate wealth: a desire shaped, more than we are probably aware, by dominant social and economic narratives. I see myself as striking in support of a radical and disturbing concept: Enough. Individually and collectively, it is time to decide what enough looks like, and how to know when we’ve achieved it.

There’s a name for this approach, coined by the Belgian philosopher Ingrid Robeyns: limitarianism. Robeyns argues that there should be an upper limit to the amount of income and wealth a person can amass. Just as we recognise a poverty line, below which no one should fall, we should recognise a riches line, above which no one should rise. This call for a levelling down is perhaps the most blasphemous idea in contemporary discourse.

But her arguments are sound. Surplus money allows some people to exercise inordinate power over others, in the workplace, in politics, and above all in the capture, use and destruction of natural wealth. If everyone is to flourish, we cannot afford the rich. Nor can we afford our own aspirations, that the culture of wealth maximisation encourages.

The grim truth is that the rich are able to live as they do only because others are poor: there is neither the physical nor ecological space for everyone to pursue private luxury. Instead we should strive for private sufficiency, public luxury. Life on earth depends on moderation.

http://www.monbiot.com