Posts Tagged ‘states’

Iceland Proves Itself Awesome, Once Again

Tuesday, February 21st, 2012

Channeling collective anger into political clout works! Just ask the people of Iceland.

When their economy collapsed, a big chunk of the Icelandic population had their voices heard. And what they were saying was ‘No!’ to the further debt being offered by the global bankers. (more…)

File-Sharing Countermeasures are Counterproductive

Friday, February 10th, 2012

Last month saw the battle for Internet freedom reach new heights as millions of people and thousands of businesses came together to protest SOPA, the overreaching anti-file sharing bill creeping its way through US legislature.

One day after the Jan. 17th SOPA blackout protest, prominent file-hosting site MegaUpload was shut down. MegaUpload owner Kim Dotcom was extradited to the US and millions of his assets have now been seized.

So what impact did the US Government’s global exercise have on unauthorized file-sharing around the world? Close to zero, according to networking gurus Deepfield, who write “File sharing has not gone away. It did not even decrease much in North America.”

In fact, the brutish take down of Megaupload caused “file sharing to become staggeringly less efficient.” Now, instead of terabytes of North American MegaUpload traffic going to US servers, “most file sharing traffic now comes from Europe over far more expensive transatlantic links.”

By all accounts, this would seem like a failure. Yet, sadly, this kind of Internet censorship has all the makings of a lasting American policy.

Take the war on drugs, as an example. Despite dumping tens of billions of dollars annually chasing illegal substances, America has yet to create even the slightest dent in the flow of drugs.

But that hasn’t stopped them from manufacturing an entire industry around drug prohibition, with task forces and mega-jails to reap in huge profits. This, along with a propaganda machine to keep enough of the public misinformed, is all it takes to keep the whole racket ongoing.

Now, with file-sharing, the US has a new enemy to wage war on. Another target to demonize in the media, more culprits to fill of the jails, and more power handed over to any government agency promising to protect the public from this scourge.

Of course these agencies will not have any lasting impact, but that’s not the goal. Instead, the file-sharing ‘pigs’ will be allowed to grow. Then, when plump and juicy, some well-funded government goons will swoop in and slaughter the swine, leaving the door open for the next one, and the next, and the next.

It’s Prohibition 101, and without enough public uproar, they’ll have no problem running the same tired play ad nauseum. Either speak out now or get your sick bags ready, people.

Israel Assassinating Iranian Civilians – US Officials

Thursday, February 9th, 2012

Israel has been orchestrating targeted assassinations of Iranian nuclear scientists. Wow! There’s been rumors for some time, but now it’s confirmed by US officials, via NBC news.

Arming and training terrorist groups? For shame, Israel.

Last week, the US military drew a line, saying military support for Israel is most definitely conditional. Now, with this new leak, it appears the US may be throwing Israel under the bus.

Good! Not to hate on any non-extremist Israeli citizens, but the State of Israel has been committing egregious human rights violations for far too long. The sooner the international community drops support for the terror-sponsoring nation of Israel, the better our world will be.

Afghan Invasion a Failure – Secret Military Report

Wednesday, February 1st, 2012

It’s been more than 11 long, bloody years, since the military industrial complex waged a so-called ‘war on terror’ in the Middle East. Yet, according to a classified document from the US Military, the Taliban and their Pakistani backers remain ‘poised to retake Afghanistan’ as soon as foreign troops withdraw.

Well, this is to be expected, given the US’s track record of failed military endeavors. In Iraq, death tolls have been rising dramatically since American troops pulled out, sparking concerns about a resurgence by Al Qaeda. As for Libya, a UN report confirms two terrorist networks were significantly bolstered by the US-led bombing campaign.

For the sake of every life senselessly cut short, and for all of the precious treasure we’ve squandered, let us at least learn something from this: wars do not create peace and democracies cannot be built with bullets.

Unless we just want to keep lining the pockets of war-profiteers while reinforcing anti-West sentiment amongst radicals, we’d do well to retire the failed formula of a predominantly militarized approach.

Instead, we could look to methods that might actually work, like building up impoverished communities around the world so that they themselves can tackle the problem of extremism from within.

Makes sense, right? Goes to show what could happen if someone other than the gun-toting looneys gets to call the shots.

Iraq: Millions Left Uprooted

Monday, January 9th, 2012

While last week’s final Iraq War death count highlights those most directly impacted by the US-led invasion, these figures leave untold yet another tale of woe: that of the 3.7 million newly created refugees.

Detailing the plight of displaced Iraq civilians, Andrew Lam writes:

Each time Uncle Sam ventures abroad he leaves an unfinished story, and nowhere is it most unfinished than the story of Iraq, where the tragedy caused by the United States occupation and inevitable abandonment is on an epic proportion.

Whether tyranny has been cast aside is questionable, but certainly cast aside are the people of Iraq. They have been displaced both internally and internationally and are now imperiled by the sin of our omission.

Lam goes on to show how Iraq is not the exception, but more like the rule:

A Theme of Betrayal: Uncle Sam left unwanted children in Vietnam known as con lai – mixed-race children — and it took years for them to come to the US, years in which many lived as abused and abandoned as children of the enemy. Uncle Sam also left tens of thousands of South Vietnamese allies to languish in re-education camps.

The costs of war far outweigh any gains, and the scars left behind can last for generations. Never has war been more unnecessary than it is right now. It is time we move ahead into the world of peace we know exists.

American Freedom Under Attack: Nationwide Strike Called

Friday, December 16th, 2011

 

A state of emergency has been declared for all freedom loving Americans across the nation. The republic is under attack!

Contrary to popular belief, the most pressing threat lies not with foreign extremists, but rather, from an equally radical homegrown form of tyranny. Like a disease, this danger has been quietly spreading within the very heart of the democratic system which entire armies have fought valiantly to protect.

What is it that stands to destroy the personal liberties and civil rights of every single US citizen? Fascist new legislation – SOPA and NDAA – which gives the US military the right to detain and torture American civilians on American soil without any trial, as well as permitting the US government to shutdown entire segments of the Internet at will.

Scary stuff. These are the kinds of laws power-hungry dictators dream about.

Why are US legislators working to pass such ludicrous bills? Here’s one reason: half of all Americans – that’s one in every two US citizens – are officially living in poverty. Stats like that will not go unanswered for long.

George Carlin says ‘they call it the American dream because you have to be asleep to believe it’. Well, it seems the people are starting to wake up. And what they are seeing is making them mad enough to stir up a revolution.

Certain powers that be already know this, which is precisely why they are preparing the US government for a war against its own people.

This means the opportunity for delay has now ended. Standing on the precipice of a slippery slope, Americans must act quickly or risk losing the opportunity to ever speak out again.

Another Piece in America’s Proto-Fascist State

Saturday, December 3rd, 2011

Without so much as a gasp from the mainstream media, a terrifying bill has crept into the lives of regular American people. Now, thanks to a shocking 93-7 vote in the US Senate, the US Armed Forces can legally detain, torture and assassinate US citizens on their own soil.

What the explicit?!!

The bulk of Bill S.1867: the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), is to authorize a whopping $662 Billion for wars in Afghanistan and Iraq – which should be enough for millions of Americans to cry out in horror. But it is a subtle rider in the bill – under the counter-terrorism section – which provides the US Government with what amounts to every aspiring tyrant’s wet dream.

So much of the US political field already caters to big business and wealthy special interests, and this is only worsening. The end result is that Americans are less and less likely to have elected officials who represent the average person’s interests.

Combine a degrading democratic system with Orwellian legislation like the NDAA, and your ripe for a fascist take over. Corrupt governments can just label any opposition – any dissent at all – as terrorism or anti-government, and then armed forces will swoop in and shut them up forever.

Why even draft this new law? If the situation was dire enough, the military would just use lethal force anyway, a la Jack Bower. Why give the war industry written permission that specifically allows it to kill Americans? It’s not like domestic terrorism has been on the rise on US soil.

More likely what we see here is the elite positioning themselves for war. They’ve smelled the winds of change, blowing from Wall Street through Oakland on to the world, and it has them quaking in their gilded Guccis.

‘Baton down the hatches. Give the police and armed forces all the tools they need to crush the rebels. We’ll try to weather the storm in our off-shore bunkers.’

Sorry, old-boys. In the world we are in the process of creating, there will be nowhere left for you and your atrocities to hide.

US Gov’t Assassinating Citizens

Monday, October 3rd, 2011

Watch out, world! If you get labelled a terrorist by the government of the United States, you run the risk of spontaneously exploding. No one is safe, not even American citizens.

Why, just this week, the CIA and US Military targeted an American living in Yemen, killing him with a drone strike. His crimes? Making incendiary Youtube videos, it seems. Although he may have done much worse, we’ll never know thanks to his being terminated without a trial or due process.

It is hard to overstate the seriousness of this precedent. A government that assassinates its own population bears the markings of an authoritarian state. And should this same government declare the whole world to be a battlefield, it has given itself license to commit long distance murder, anywhere on earth, with impunity.

Corporations, bankers, and the war machine have all run amok. It is time to take to the streets and reclaim the democratic system. Enough is enough.

United States Flooding World With Weapons

Friday, September 30th, 2011

The Congressional Research Service’s arms sales report came out this week, and, once again, the United States has proven itself to be the frontrunner in the death-dealing business. In 2010, more than half of all exported weapons came from America.

As sad as it must be to know your nation is the world’s biggest war-profiteer, it must be even worse knowing that a sizable portion of your fellow citizens look upon these figures with reverence. As if arming the world is something to be proud of… ‘Yes! We are helping the world’s people to gain their freedom and democracy via a barrel of a gun.’

Yeah, right. Is that the same democracy and freedom currently being enjoyed by Iraqis and Afghans?

In all seriousness, it’s time for Americans to wake up and see what they are doing to the world. Exporting war and weapons is no way to build peace. Nor is there any honor in making a living off getting people killed.

Banning Public Marches, Blacking Out Internet

Monday, September 26th, 2011

The United Kingdom has banned public marches for a 30 day period. Oh well, it’s probably for the best given the upsurge of violent protests, right? Wrong!

It doesn’t matter that the bans are for a set period of time, or that they are localized to a few boroughs. Restricting the right to voice discontent, even for a single moment, in any place, is far too much!

The problem is the precedent the motion sets. The same mechanisms which ban public protests for a month can quite easily ban them indefinitely.

Sadly, the UK is not alone with their heavy handed approach to dealing with civil disobedience. In New York, many activists from the Occupy Wall St. movement found their cell phone service cut, reminiscent of the BART blackout that happened a few months ago in San Fransisco.

In the US, UK, and elsewhere, these sweeping restrictions in response to minor uprisings should not go unchallenged. Fight to stop them from taking away your civil liberties, because you will most certainly have to fight to get them back.

Be outraged! Don’t shirk your responsibility – speak out against the consistent expansion of police powers. Let your voice be heard about these and any injustices you see!