How a Pandemic is Destroying the West, by Michael Hudson

Where's my bailout?

Image by John Nakamura Remy via Flickr

by Michael Hudson
Writer, Dandelion Salad
September 14, 2020

The U.S. is Saving the Financial Sector, not the Economy

Before juxtaposing the U.S. and alternative responses to the coronavirus’ economic effects, I would like to step back in time to show how the pandemic has revealed a deep underlying problem. We are seeing the consequences of Western societies painting themselves into a debt corner by their creditor-oriented philosophy of law. Neoliberal anti-government (or more accurately, anti-democratic) ideology has centralized social planning and state power in “the market,” meaning specifically the financial market on Wall Street and in other financial centers.

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Chris Hedges and Richard D. Wolff: The Sickness is the System—When Capitalism Fails to Save Us from Pandemics or Itself

capitalism is the crisis

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Dandelion Salad

with Chris Hedges

RT America on Sep 12, 2020

On the show this week, Chris Hedges discusses with economist Professor Rick D. Wolff, the economic and political collapse of the American empire.

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The Anti-Social Socialist: How Capitalism Controls You

How Capitalism Controls You by The Anti-Social Socialist

Screenshot by Dandelion Salad via Flickr
Watch the video below

Happy Labor Day!

by
Writer, Dandelion Salad
Originally published Sept. 12, 2018
September 7, 2020

“Capitalism keeps us in a state of panic. Most of us are just one medical bill away from bankruptcy. It keeps us overworked and underpaid so we don’t have time to question its dominance over our lives. It takes the fruits produced by the many and gives them to the few. Concentrated wealth means concentrated power, concentrated power means less democracy, less democracy means less freedom, and less freedom means you are reduced to a precarious life of servitude.” —

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Immigration in Relation to Imperialism: On Mexico, Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador and Nicaragua, by W.R. Zammichiéli

Mural: Tribute to Archbishop Oscar Romero

Image by Franco Folini via Flickr

by W.R. Zammichiéli
Writer, Dandelion Salad
September 4, 2020

Throughout the established political structures within the United States, there has been an extensively documented amount of accounts concerning the particular activities of the state apparatus in terms of what transpires on the national borders between the two nations of Mexico and the United States. Within the course of current events, the considerable amount of discourse regarding what would constitute an appropriate reaction to the perpetuation of circumstances on the national border has exponentially increased in the course of years (given various electoral occurrences, socioeconomic degradation, cultural responses to societal denigration, and the political activities which originate because of these cultural responses in question). In terms of acceptable discourse, the political conflict that has emerged directly from the various policies of the United States on the national border, which included but is not limited to intensified national surveillance to familial separation to deportation to mass incarceration to stricter border security apparatuses, has seemingly been confined to whether or not the United States should be focused on inclusion or exclusion to integration or segregation to opportunities or the absence thereof.

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Chris Hedges: The Signs of the Declining Empire

No Oligarchy

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Dandelion Salad

with Chris Hedges

The Democracy At Work on Aug 31, 2020

On this week’s Economic Update, Prof. Wolff discusses the following: Denmark’s new taxes on banks and rich people to help workers doing dangerous jobs; West Virginia AG sues Walmart and CVS for complicity in opioid scandal; and US State Department urges universities to sell shares in Chinese corporations. On the second half of the show, Prof. Wolff interviews author and journalist Chris Hedges on signs of the declining US empire.

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Chris Hedges: Those Statues Are Statements Of White Supremacy, Part II

Albert Pike statue pedestal

Image by BeyondDC via Flickr

Dandelion Salad

with Chris Hedges

RT America on Aug 29, 2020

On the show this week, Chris Hedges, in his second interview with Professor James W. Loewen, discusses public monuments and statues, who put them up and why, and what may replace them.

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Indigenous People of Mexico Fight More Than Pandemic, by Yanis Iqbal

Protest banner Oaxaca, Mexico - 2015

Image by Cordelia Persen via Flickr

by Yanis Iqbal
Writer, Dandelion Salad
Aligarh, India
August 26, 2020

In Mexico, the intensity of the Covid-19 pandemic is increasing. With more than 568,600 cases and 61,450 deaths (third largest number of Covid-19 deaths), the country is staggering under the Coronavirus pandemic. While the entire country is experiencing the impact, indigenous communities represent the hardest hit demographic. Data from Coneval, the national government’s social development agency, has shown that the Covid-19 fatality rate in Mexico’s poorest 427 municipalities is 14.1. On the other hand, the fatality rate in the country’s 54 wealthiest municipalities is 8.1, “meaning that people who live in impoverished parts of the country are almost twice as likely to die if they become sick with Covid-19 than those who live in affluent areas.”

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Payroll Taxes Are the Achilles Heel of Social Security, by Jim Kavanagh

to the order of me

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by Jim Kavanagh
Writer, Dandelion Salad
The Polemicist
August 21, 2020

On August 8th, Donald Trump took four executive actions on coronavirus relief. One was a memorandum deferring, to the end of the year, payment of the employee portion of the payroll tax for employees making less than $4000 biweekly. (Employer payments had already been deferred in the CARES act.)

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Chris Hedges: The Importance of Howard Zinn

Howard Zinn

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Dandelion Salad

Originally published Jan. 25, 2020

with Chris Hedges and Howard Zinn

RT America on Jan 25, 2020

On the show this week Chris Hedges discusses the importance of historian, Howard Zinn, for a fuller understanding of American history, with author and journalist, Ray Suarez.

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Covid-19 and the Health Crisis in Latin America, by Yanis Iqbal

Coronavirus graffiti, Leake Street

Image by duncan c via Flickr

by Yanis Iqbal
Writer, Dandelion Salad
Aligarh, India
August 9, 2020

Latin America has surpassed more than 5 million Covid-19 cases to overtake North America, with 4.8 million Covid-19 cases, as the region worst-hit by the Coronavirus pandemic. This astronomic increase in Covid-19 cases has been accompanied by a corresponding economic catastrophe of great magnitude. According to a United Nations Policy Brief entitled “The Impact of COVID-19 on Latin America and the Caribbean”, “Parts of Latin America and the Caribbean have become hotspots of the coronavirus (COVID19) pandemic, exacerbated by weak social protection, fragmented health systems and profound inequalities. COVID-19 will result in the worst recession in the region in a century, causing a 9.1% contraction in regional GDP in 2020…This could push the number of poor up by 45 million (to a total of 230 million) and the number of extremely poor by 28 million (to 96 million in total), putting them at risk of undernutrition.” The Policy Brief further states that “The sharp drop in economic activity is expected to lift the unemployment rate from 8.1% in 2019 to 13.5% in 2020. The poverty rate is expected to rise by 7.0 percentage points in 2020, to 37.2%, while extreme poverty is expected to rise by 4.5 percentage points, from 11.0% to 15.5%, which represents an increase of 28 million people.”

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Marx in the House: Episode 3: Rent Gap + Episode 4: Disinvestment

Gentrification Zone

Image by Matt Brown via Flickr

Dandelion Salad

Space Babies on Jul 23, 2020

Marx in the House is a series that explores gentrification and housing from a Marxist perspective. In this episode we take a look at how the rent gap is the fundamental theoretical component explaining gentrification. We look at how Ruth Glass spotted and theorized the rent gap first and how Neil Smith elaborated on it.

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Part 2: Freedom From Statism, by W.R. Zammichiéli

Smash The State

Image by Andrew Reilly via Flickr

by W.R. Zammichiéli
Writer, Dandelion Salad
July 31, 2020

“Every State is a dictatorship.” — Antonio Gramsci

(Part Two of an Ongoing Series: The Four Fundamental Freedoms of Libertarian Socialism) [Part 1]

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The Garifuna in Honduras: A History of Pillage and Dispossession, by Yanis Iqbal

Garifuna Village on Chachauate

Image by fabulousfabs via Flickr

by Yanis Iqbal
Writer, Dandelion Salad
Aligarh, India
July 29, 2020

Amid the current Covid-19 pandemic, the Garifuna community of Honduras is experiencing state-sponsored violence and regulated repression. On July 18, 2020, heavily armed personnel of the Police Investigation Department (DPI) barged into the house of Alberth Sneider Centeno, Garifuna president of the land community of El Triunfo de la Cruz, and abducted him. Later, the same armed group kidnapped Suami Aparicio Mejía García, Gerardo Mizael Rochez Cálix and Milton Joel Martínez Álvarez, members of the OFRANEH (Black Fraternal Organization of Honduras), and a fifth person, Junior Rafael Juárez Mejía. The General Confederation of Labor (CGT) has issued a statement saying “that the kidnapping of these people is motivated by the activity of the Garifuna people in defense of their ancestral lands and the rights of Afro-indigenous and indigenous people in these territories.”

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Part 1: Freedom From Capitalism, by W.R. Zammichiéli

Anarchism

Image by Rae Allen via Flickr

by W.R. Zammichiéli
Writer, Dandelion Salad
July 26, 2020

The ideology of capitalism is indistinguishable from the ideology of the cancer cell — unlimited growth for the purposes of infinite expansion within a finite reality.

(Part One of an Ongoing Series: The Four Fundamental Freedoms of Libertarian Socialism)

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Environmental Disaster and Health Crisis in Cerrejon, Colombia, by Yanis Iqbal

El Cerrejon (Contreras)

Image by Lee Bosher via Flickr

by Yanis Iqbal
Writer, Dandelion Salad
Aligarh, India
July 25, 2020

At Cerrejon (Colombia), the largest open-pit coal mine in Latin America owned equally by BHP (Australia), Anglo American PLC (United Kingdom) and Glencore (Switzerland), the situation of the indigenous people is progressively worsening. Cerrejon Limited has informed the workers that “all the existing shifts will be unified into a single 7-day work, for three days off.” With the enforcement of the new shifts, “workers would go from working 15 to 21 days and the mine would go from 4 to 3 shifts, leaving at least 25% of the current workforce unemployed.” The new shift pattern is likely to aggravate the health of workers as long working hours increase the number of work-related pathologies. Current work shift arrangements have already led to more than “700 pathologies associated with musculoskeletal, respiratory, cardiovascular and ear diseases, among others.” As the level of work becomes more stressful, these occupational diseases will start multiplying.

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