With the unabated march of the Covid-19 pandemic, the economic situation of Colombian coffee farmers is rapidly deteriorating. The price of Arabica coffee has reduced to an exceptionally low $0.9 per pound in June. Earlier, coffee production had fallen by 28% in April, 12% in March, 9% in February and 19% in January. Specialty coffee farmers too are experiencing difficulties in the form of shortage of experienced coffee pickers. In specialty coffee, coffee cherries are picked at the peak of ripeness. But with the absence of expert pickers, “Coffee cherries left on the tree will over-ripen or fall to the ground, effectively nullifying all the additional work put into the coffee to achieve the higher quality.” This labor shortage has been partly caused by the pandemic-necessitated closure of Colombia-Venezuela border which has significantly blocked the flow of Venezuelan migrants. 1.8 million Venezuelan migrants reside in Colombia and their contribution to Colombian coffee sector is indispensably important with nine out of ten coffee pickers in Colombia being Venezuelans.
Throughout its era as the “world police” that overthrows governments for the benefit of corporate interests, the U.S. has perfected a strategy for destroying societies and remaking them according to its own preferences. To varying degrees, this playbook for regime change has consisted of a basic formula: destabilize a society, then use propaganda and violence to impose Americanism onto its culture and governmental system. We’ve seen this carried out in Iran with the 1953 CIA coup that overthrew the country’s democracy and replaced it with the Shah, in Chile with the 1973 CIA coup that overthrew the country’s socialist president Allende and installed the Pinochet dictatorship in his place, and so on.
with Chris Hedges
RT America on Jul 11, 2020
On the show this week, Chris Hedges talks to journalist, Dean Yates, who thirteen years ago was the head of Reuters’ Baghdad bureau. On July 12, 2007, Yates learned two of his employees – Saeed Chmagh and Namir Noor-Eldeen had been fired upon and killed by the U.S. Army. A war crime the U.S. military tried to cover up. Their deaths, and those of others, were the focus of the now-infamous video, Collateral Murder, leaked by Chelsea Manning and released by Wikileaks.
July 14th, 2020, marks the fifth anniversary of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) Agreement, often referred to as the Iran Nuclear Deal (or simply the Deal) – the Deal that wasn’t. It was yet another attempt at regime change.
Black Agenda Report Presents: The Left Lens on Jun 27, 2020
In this debut episode of the Left Lens, Danny Haiphong and Margaret Kimberley introduce viewers to Black Agenda Report, question neoliberal confidence in Joe Biden’s 2020 chances, discuss why community control of the police is so critical to the development of the movement against racist policing, and end with a brief analysis of internationalism and solidarity.
This last week, U.S. intelligence officials and their allies in the corporate media spread the evidence-free claim that Russia has put bounties on American troops in Afghanistan. This propaganda campaign was both an attempt to reinforce anti-Russian sentiment, and a subtle way to manufacture consent for the ongoing Afghanistan war. Which prompts one to ask: why is the empire so committed to perpetuating war? Why haven’t any of the wars it’s started since 9/11 been ended, and why does it evidently have every intention of making sure they don’t end?
The habitability of the earth and the viability of lesser evilism are on the ropes, and incrementalism is thriving even in the current moment of increased activism for radical change. Just take a look at the new “Climate Crisis Action Plan” from the Democratic Party’s Select Committee on the Climate Crisis.
Some thoughts on “patriotism” written on July 4
Most important thought: I’m sick and tired of this thing called “patriotism”.
The Japanese pilots who bombed Pearl Harbor were being patriotic. The German people who supported Hitler and his conquests were being patriotic, fighting for the Fatherland. All the Latin American military dictators who overthrew democratically-elected governments and routinely tortured people were being patriotic — saving their beloved country from “communism”.
C.P. Sorensen on Jun 27, 2020
I analyze three military contracts from Friday, 26 June 2020, and explain some features of the U.S. military-industrial-congressional triangle (popularly known as the military-industrial complex).
On this July 4, we would do well to renounce nationalism and all its symbols: its flags, its pledges of allegiance, its anthems, its insistence in song that God must single out America to be blessed.
Updated: July 12, 2020
Matt Taibbi concluded that the 2008 Wall Street bailout had “built a banking system that discriminates against community banks, makes Too Big to Fail banks even Too Bigger to Failier, increases risk, discourages sound business lending and punishes savings by making it even easier and more profitable to chase high-yield investments than to compete for small depositors.” In this post-crash environment, the largest financial institutions gained more of a hegemonic grip than ever, with the five biggest banks having come to own almost half the industry by 2015.