NEW YORK CITY—Jon Friesen, 27, tall and lanky with a long, dirty-blond ponytail, a purple scarf and an old green fleece, is sitting on concrete at the edge of Zuccotti Park leading a coordination meeting, a gathering that takes place every morning with representatives of each of Occupy Wall Street’s roughly 40 working groups.
“Our conversation is about what it means to be a movement and what it means to be an organization,” he says to the circle. A heated discussion follows, including a debate over whether the movement should make specific demands.
Although many on the established Left are claiming OWS as their own, latching on to the anti-capitalist theme that figures prominently, at least in some locations, it’s clear that the focus of the OWS ‘movement’ varies greatly from place to place. Thus where it all started, in downtown Manhattan, the focus is very much on capitalist criminals rather than criminal capitalism. But little or no mention of the dreaded word- socialism, ironically for fear of alienating even those who occupy, never mind what the rabid corporate/state media does with that which shall remain nameless.
“As the father of a young son, I went to the White House on March 19 to be a voice for Shahidullah.” From the closing argument of Defendant Art Laffin in DC Superior Court.
Yesterday marked a watershed day in my 27 year legal career. It did not occur as I deftly cross-examined a witness, nor while waxing eloquent in front of a jury. Rather, it transpired as I sat in the back row of courtroom 219 in the DC Superior Court while watching and listening to the final day of testimony and closing arguments at a trial where 19 American citizens argued for justice. Continue reading →
East African “Drone Alley” – a harbinger of Western power projection across the African continent
US military sources have confirmed that the Obama administration is engaged in a new war in the famine-hit Horn of Africa region.
The disclosure in the Washington Post  comes only days after other prominent Western media outlets, including the New York Times and the Financial Times, carried denials from the US government that it was involved in directly supporting Kenyan forces that invaded Somalia on 16 October.
Killer Coca Cola’s Random Facts:
*Worked with Nazis
*Coca Cola agents killed protesters
*The drug from the coca plant cocaine was used in the drink.
*Depleted water from small villages across the world
*Continued to allow illegal child labour Continue reading →
Trade and Payments Theory in a Financialized Economy
by Michael Hudson (UMKC)
Paper delivered at the Boeckler Foundation meetings, Berlin, October 29, 2011, #D3.
Ricardian trade theory was based on the cost of labor at a time when grain and other consumer goods accounted for most subsistence spending. But today’s budgets are dominated by payments to the finance, insurance and real estate (FIRE) sector, and to newly privatized monopolies. This has made FIRE the determining factor in trade competitiveness.
The question confronting the Occupy Wall Street encampments and their offshoots in scores of cities and towns around the country is quo vadis? Where is it going?
This decentralized, leaderless civic initiative has attracted the persistent attention of the mass media in the past five weeks. Television cameras from all over the world are parked down at Zuccotti Park in lower Manhattan, two blocks from Wall Street.
(Earth Focus: Episode 32) Nuclear Power: Risks and Consequences, an original Earth Focus investigative report, looks at the untold stories behind three of the world’s largest nuclear disasters: Three Mile Island, Chernobyl and Fukushima. According to government and industry officials, no one died as a result of Three Mile Island and only low doses of radiation — equivalent to a single chest XRay were released. But many local residents disagree and cite medical evidence that radiation released from the Three Mile Island reactor was severe enough to cause disease and death. It’s been 30 years but the controversy continues. Chernobyl was the worse nuclear disaster in history. A new book, Chernobyl: Consequences of a Catastrophe says that almost a million people died as a result of the nuclear accident — not 4,000 as The World Health Organization and the International Atomic Energy Agency claim. A screw up or a coverup? Earth Focus looks at evidence that links radioactive exposure to diminished intelligence, premature aging and a variety of other health conditions. Given the severity of the accident in Fukushima and the inability of the government to provide action to safeguard large portions of its population, the Japanese government moved the goal posts on what is considered safe radiation exposure for children and nuclear workers. Japanese organized crime, the Yakuza, is now becoming actively involved in the cleanup of radioactive waste.
Last week, Barbara “wah-wah” Walters—thank you, Gilda Radner!—was trotted in front of ABC’s Evening News cameras to assure those familes still chowing down that the brutal, disgusting, illegal, savage beating, sodomization and execution of Libyan “dictator” Gaddafi was… understandable… because, he was “crazy.”
“As usual, we swim in a pile of dishonorable politicians. An Arab poem describes how the rotten rubbish floats to the top of the water while all the gems – corals and precious fish – stay at the bottom.” (An Arab friend.)
If events of the past few days are anything to go by, the UN-NATO insurgent allies are set to bring a grim, lawless, murderous and fundamentalist future to the “New Libya.”
WASHINGTON/KABUL, Oct 25, 2011 (IPS) – A July United Nations report asserting that only 30 civilians died in targeted raids in Afghanistan during the first six months of 2011 reflected only a very small fraction of night raids in which civilians were killed, according to officials of the independent Afghan commission which had co-produced the 2010 report on civilian casualties with the U.N. Mission.
If we want to ensure that we have someone who will support peace, we have to make sure that the Republicans have a pro peace candidate. In all states we can vote for Ron Paul in the primary or caucus and then vote for whoever we want in the Presidential election. Continue reading →