On Monday, the frenetic gossipy world of nonsense and distraction that, rather sadly and shamefully, constitutes most of what passes for news and culture these days paused for a moment to reflect upon the publication of the most significant document that will be published this year — the latest climate change report prepared by the climate scientists of the IPCC (the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change), the United Nations body founded in 1988 by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) to provide “regular assessments of the scientific basis of climate change, its impacts and future risks, and options for adaptation and mitigation.”
More than 150 journalists have been killed in Mexico since 2000. The case of Regina Martinez, an investigative journalist assassinated in her home in the state of Veracruz in 2012, is emblematic of this war being waged against the press. Katherine Corcoran, former Associated Press bureau chief for Mexico and Central America, joins The Chris Hedges Report to discuss her book on the case of Regina Martinez and the wider context of the killings of journalists in Mexico, In the Mouth of the Wolf.
Overview: This was an impromptu conversation precipitated by former Congressman Dennis Kucinich to have a deep dive discussion with a former economic advisor, Michael Hudson, on the shockingly large recent bank collapses. As the former chair of the powerful Government Oversight Subcommittee, Kucinich had a ringside seat in unraveling the bank collapses after the housing bubble burst. He confronted the players in the field with withering questions in Congressional hearings. Now Kucinich wanted important feedback from a banking insider on how this crisis was different than the one in 2008.
Once again, government socialism – ultimately backed by taxpayers – is saving reckless midsized banks and their depositors. Silicon Valley Bank (S.V.B) and Signature Bank in New York greedily mismanaged their risk levels and had to be closed down. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), in return, to avoid a bank panic and a run on other midsized banks went over its $250,000 insurance cap per account and guaranteed all deposits – no matter how large, which are owned by the rich and corporations – in those banks.
“I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore.”
So screamed the character Howard Beale in the 1976 movie “Network,” a prescient commentary on the corporate capture and slow suffocation of America. Howard was a prime-time news anchor who’d had enough.
American workers are stuck in a prison, a prison that they’re kept in through the perpetual threat of homelessness. This isn’t truly a rhetorical point, it’s an empirically proven reality. Nearly two-thirds of the country’s workers are now living paycheck to paycheck, meaning this last year’s inflation has made them easier to coerce. That’s the directly stated goal of the capitalist ruling class at this stage. A Bank of America memo from last year said decreased worker living standards will represent greater leverage for employers. The consequences of this are the destruction of these people’s mental and physical wellbeing. They’re being strained, abused, and exploited while having to choose between this and living on the streets.
In a lively and insightful roundtable discussion, Ralph hosts former Marine company commander, Matthew Hoh, who when not deployed also worked in the Pentagon and the State Department, and independent and unembedded Iraq war correspondent, Dahr Jamail. They mark the twentieth anniversary of the U.S. invasion of Iraq and discuss the consequences of that misbegotten and illegal war. Plus, we hear a clip from Ralph’s and Patti Smith’s antiwar concert tour conducted in 2005. Continue reading →
“All wars are fought twice, the first time on the battlefield, the second time in memory.” — Viet Thanh Nguyen
As mainstream U.S. media outlets pause to remember the U.S. invasion of Iraq, it’s clear that there’s a lot they hope we’ll forget – first and foremost, the media’s own active complicity in whipping up public support for the war.
Who blew up the Nord Stream pipelines? In February, veteran journalist and Pulitzer Prize-winner Seymour Hersh dropped a bombshell report detailing how President Joe Biden ordered the destruction of the Nord Stream pipelines.
1) Biden proposes a massive increase in military spending — above and beyond both what he proposed the year before and what the Congress increased that to. If you look at U.S. military spending according to SIPRI in constant 2021 dollars from 1949 to now (all the years they provide, with their calculation adjusting for inflation), Obama’s 2011 record will probably fall this year. If you look at actual numbers, not adjusting for inflation, Biden has set a new record each year.
Western capitalism and its supposed democracy are in terminal crisis as increasing numbers of people reject the system’s abysmal economic failure: record levels of poverty, inequality and relentless militarism and warmongering.
In a jam-packed program full of abundant insight, Ralph first welcomes back Dahr Jamail to discuss his work We Are the Middle of Forever: Indigenous Voices from Turtle Island on the Changing Earth about what we can learn from indigenous people who have survived incredible disruptions to the climate to their families and to their way of life.
Anthony Albanese was mouthing his favourite platitude, “enough is enough” long before he was elected prime minister of Australia last year. He gave many of us precious hope, including Julian’s family. As prime minister he added weasel words about “not sympathizing” with what Julian had done. Apparently we had to understand his need to cover his appropriated ass in case Washington called him to order.
With the recent spate of vicious attacks on drag performers and drag shows, I’ve been thinking a lot about a brilliant quote by the late Ram Dass: “Treat everyone you meet as if they were God in drag.” And I think it gets to the heart of this manufactured controversy.