Oh, Day of Labor.
Dean Baker chimes in:
. . . the employment rate for prime-age workers (ages 25-54) is still down by 2.5 percentage points from its pre-Recession peak, and almost 4 percentage points from its 2000 peaks. This translates into a drop in employment of more than 2 million compared to 2007 employment rates and more than 3.5 million compared to 2000 employment rates.
All of which makes my point about the last Recession having never really ended for most of the population.
Which seems almost impossible for any other news source to address truthfully.
Except for the following one.
The holiday originated as an apology capitalists tossed to labor to defuse a standoff.
Workers understood that labor was the backbone of the economy, not Wall Street moguls or bankers in their fine offices. Workers wanted a holiday that recognized labor, thus elevating labor in public policy to a standing with capital. Some states created labor day holidays, but it wasn’t until 1894 that Labor Day was made a federal holiday.
Congress created the federal holiday in response to the murder of strikers by US Army troops and federal marshalls during the Pullman strike of 1894. The factory workers who built Pullman railway cars lived in the company town of Pullman. George Pullman provoked a strike by lowering wages but not the rents charged in the company town.
President Grover Cleveland relied on Attorney General Richard Olney to restore capitalist control. Olney, a former railway attorney, sent in the federal violance to break up the strike. Olney still received a retainer from his railway company that was larger than his salary as US Attorney General. So we know whose side he was on. The presstitute media portrayed the beaten down strikers as unpatriotic foreigners, and the strike leader, Eugene Debs, was sentenced to federal prison. The experience radicalized Debs and turned him into a socialist.
The obvious injustice created more sympathy for labor than capitalists could stomach, so Congress defused the situation by creating Labor Day. President Cleveland washed his hands of the blood on them by signing the legislation.
Officially what we are celebrating on the first Monday of September is American labor, but what is really being celebrated is the success of capitalists again flummoxing the people and avoiding a real social revolution.
The labor movement, which gave us Labor Day, is no longer with us. The American labor movement died about ten years after the death of its most famous leader, George Meany of the AFL-CIO. Meany, born in 1894, died in 1980.
I remember when labor was at the center of politics and policy. There was even a field of economics called “labor economics.” The political influence of labor ended with the offshoring of US industrial and manufacturing jobs. For years US capitalists tried to avoid a fair shake for labor by locating their facilities in Southern states that had right to work laws. But with the collapse of the Soviet Union and the change in attitude of India and China toward foreign capital, capitalists learned that they could increase profits by using foreign labor offshore to produce the goods and services that they sold to Americans.
The difference in labor costs flowed directly into profits, executive bonuses, and shareholder capital gains.
Free market economists, who live in a make-believe world, pretend that the lower labor costs flow into lower US consumer prices and that consumers benefit despite the loss of well-paying jobs. The problem with free market economics is that a priori reasoning takes precedence over empirical fact. For free market economists, the way the world should be prevails over the way that the world actually is.
As a consequence of jobs offshoring, industrial and manufacturing cities became semi-ghost towns with declining populations. Municipal and state governments, deprived of tax base, found themselves under duress to make pension payments. To avoid immediate bankruptcy, cities such as Chicago sold off public assets such as 75 years of parking meter revenues for a one-time payment.
The Democratic Party, which had been the countervailing power against the Republican business party, was deprived of union funding as the jobs that paid union dues were no longer in America. By moving production offshore, capitalists turned the Democrats into a second capitalist political party dependent on funding from the business sector.
Today we have one party with two heads.
The competition between the parties is about which party gets to be the whore for the capitalists for the next political term.
As Democrats and Republicans swap the whore function back and forth, neither party has an incentive to do anything different.*
So that was the real reason for the ascent to political power of the Clinton-backed and -funded DLC?
No more easy money for the top (er, bottom?) feeders?
Good enough for government work anyway.
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We got the news the other day, oh boy,
from the ultrarich:
Hillary! Hillary! She's our girl!
If she can't do it, we'll take over the world!
According to our friends at the "New York Times:"
Cash-seeking candidates from both parties often rely on August to reach vacationing donors who open their wallets, and their palatial homes. In 2012, the Republican presidential nominee, Mitt Romney, brought in close to $4 million over a single weekend from events in the Hamptons. And Mr. Trump, while netting $64 million through online and direct-mail fund-raising in July, also made the trek this summer to the eastern end of Long Island to raise cash.
But Mr. and Mrs. Clinton have occupied a particular place in the social fabric of the enclave. Over the past several summers, they have spent the last two weeks of August in a rented 12,000-square-foot home with a heated pool in East Hampton and in a six-bedroom mansion with a private path to the beach in Sagaponack. This year, the former first couple stayed in the guesthouse of Steven Spielberg’s East Hampton compound built on nine acres overlooking Georgica and Lily Ponds.
Mr. Trump’s candidacy has allowed Mrs. Clinton to reach out to a new set of donors in the area who typically give to Republicans but dislike the current nominee. (Mr. Trump feels more at home at Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Fla., than in the Hamptons, where the exclusive Maidstone Club once denied him a full-time membership, according to The New York Post.)
“The Hamptons is full of powerful, wealthy people who are bored and go to constant social events to see who else got invited and to show your status,” said Ken Sunshine, a veteran Democratic activist and public relations executive with a home in Remsenburg, N.Y. “This year,” he added, “going to a Clinton event is at the very top of the list.”
Funny thing about this latest money-gathering enterprise though.
Seems it's all going to/through the Clinton Charitable Foundation - not for her election or down-ticket ones though.
If you can believe it.
Because the inner circle don't think she's necessarily going to be the Democratic candidate for office.
And it's not just because of her suspicious-sounding loss-of-memory excuse from the concussion.
And, thus, all the political shenanigans and low-level demagogery/hacking evaporates into thin air.
Let alone that nonsense testifying about email skullduggery and hammer-destroyed electronic devices.
The only money I know of that competes with the above is oil money, especially the Saudi connections' money:
The following is the Truthout interview with Medea Benjamin about Kingdom of the Unjust: Behind the U.S.-Saudi Connection.
Mark Karlin: Isn't Saudi Arabia, in many ways, an oligarchical extension of the US economy? Yes, it is a monarchy, but democracy hasn't exactly put the brakes on the development of an oligarchy in the US. I keep thinking of that infamous photo of George W. Bush, walking pinkies intertwined, with a Saudi royalist when Bush was president.
Medea Benjamin: The Bush family certainly had a cozy relationship with the Saudi rulers - oil men to oil men. The former Saudi Ambassador to the US, Bandar bin Sultan, was so close to the Bushes that he was known as Bandar Bush. But I wouldn't call Saudi Arabia an extension of the US economy; more accurately, both economies are key players in a global capitalist economy propelled by planet-destroying fossil fuels and weapons. Whether the US version with a multiparty system with elections, or the Saudi version of a theocratic monarchy, both economies are in the hands of elites who benefit at the expense of the people and planet.
Speaking of democracy, doesn't the tight US relationship with Saudi Arabia exemplify that our foreign policy is about US economic interests and not the spread of suffrage and equality?
Benjamin is a journalist first and foremost.
One of the few it seems as she digs out easily revealed evidence of political corruption that none but the truly brave (none of whom actually reside in the USA! USA! USA! anymore) will touch.
The gloves seem to be coming off.
But it's only money, folks.
Tawdry, I believe, is the guiding adjective:
If I told you that Democratic Party lobbyist Tony Podesta, whose brother John Podesta chairs Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign, is a registered foreign agent on the Saudi government's payroll, you'd probably think I was a Trump-thumping conspiracy theorist. But it's true.
The lobby firm created by both Tony and John Podesta in 1988 receives $140,000 a month from the Saudi government, a government that beheads nonviolent dissidents, uses torture to extract forced confessions, doesn't allow women to drive, and bombs schools, hospitals and residential neighborhoods in neighboring Yemen.
The Podesta Group's March 2016 filing, required under the Foreign Agents Registration Act of 1938, shows that Tony Podesta himself oversees the Saudi account. At the same time, Tony Podesta is also a top campaign contributor and bundler for Hillary Clinton. So while one brother runs the campaign, the other brother funds it with earnings that come, in part, from the Saudis.
John and Tony Podesta have been heavyweights in DC insider politics for decades. John Podesta served as President Bill Clinton's chief of staff, founded the influential DC think tank Center for American Progress (which regularly touts Saudi "reforms"), and was counselor to President Obama. Tony Podesta was dubbed by The New York Times as "one of Washington's biggest players" whose clients "are going to get a blueprint for how to succeed in official Washington."
The brothers seem to have no problem mixing their roles into the same pot. Tony Podesta held a Clinton campaign fundraiser at his home featuring gourmet Italian food cooked by himself and his brother, the campaign chairman. The fundraiser, by the way, came just days after Tony Podesta filed his Saudi contract with the Justice Department, a contract that included an initial "project fee" payment of $200,000.
The Saudis hired the Podesta Group in 2015 because it was getting hammered in the press over civilian casualties from its airstrikes in Yemen and its crackdown on political dissidents at home, including sentencing blogger Raif Badawi to ten years in prison and 1,000 lashes for "insulting Islam." Since then, Tony Podesta's fingerprints have been all over Saudi Arabia's advocacy efforts in Washington DC. When Saudi Arabia executed the prominent nonviolent Shia dissident Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr, causing protests throughout the Shia world and inflaming sectarian divisions, The New York Times noted that the Podesta Group provided the newspaper with a Saudi commentator who defended the execution.
The Podesta-Clinton-Saudi connection should be seen in light of the recent media exposes revealing the tawdry pay-to-play nature of the Clinton Foundation. Top on the list of foreign donors to the foundation is Saudi Arabia, which contributed between $10 million and $25 million.
What did the Saudis get for their largesse and access? WikiLeaks revealed a 2009 cable by then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton saying: "More needs to be done since Saudi Arabia remains a critical financial support base for Al Qaeda, the Taliban, Lashkar e-Tayyiba and other terrorist groups."
Instead of sanctioning the Saudis, Clinton did the opposite: She authorized enormous quantities of weapons to be sold to them. On Christmas Eve in 2011, Hillary Clinton and her closest aides celebrated a massive $29.4 billion sale to the Saudis of over 80 F-15 fighter jets, manufactured by Boeing, a company which coincidentally contributed $900,000 to the Clinton Foundation. In a chain of enthusiastic emails, an aide exclaimed that it was "not a bad Christmas present." I'm sure the Yemenis at the receiving end of the Saudi bombings would not be so enthusiastic.
The Clintons have said that if Hillary Clinton gets elected, the foundation will stop taking foreign donations. But what about no longer taking campaign contributions from people who are paid by the Saudi government to whitewash its image? The Podesta Group should be blacklisted from contributing to Clinton's campaign until they drop the monarchy as a client and return their ill-gotten gains. If Hillary Clinton wants to be a meaningful symbol for human rights and women's empowerment, her campaign must live up to the values she claims to represent, and this would be one step in the right direction.
Linda • 3 days ago
John Podesto can be seen in a video, in a untied front with the public school privatizing, Jeb Bush. They call on the wealthy to donate to politicians who want ed "reform", which IMO, means corporatizing public education for Silicon Valley's benefit and privatizing schools for Wall Street's benefit. The Podesto Group's CEO is a "veteran GOP political operative and was deputy campaign manager for former Gov.Jeb Bush". GOP VP candidate Pence is an ed reformer and Koch sycophant. The parents of Hillary's Ohio campaign manager are venture capitalists. Behind every door is a 0.1%' er.
YoungAmerican • 3 days ago
It's time for JILL STEIN. If we as Americans can't do this one simple and plainly right thing, then we deserve what we get but our children won't.
Speaking about right directions?
As a special non-Labor Day treat, Washington's Blog offers up these tidbits of insider knowledge:
. . . The CIA videotaped the interrogation of 9/11 suspects, falsely told the 9/11 Commission that there were no videotapes or other records of the interrogations, and then illegally destroyed all of the tapes and transcripts of the interrogations.
. . . The tape of interviews of air traffic controllers on-duty on 9/11 was intentionally destroyed by crushing the cassette by hand, cutting the tape into little pieces, and then dropping the pieces in different trash cans around the building as shown by this NY Times article (summary version is free; full version is pay-per-view) and by this article from the Chicago Sun-Times.
. . . The FBI long ago found and analyzed the “black box” recorders from the airplanes which hit the Twin Towers, but has consistently denied that they were ever found.
. . . The 9/11 Commissioners concluded that officials from the Pentagon lied to the Commission, and considered recommending criminal charges for such false statements.
. . . The chairs of both the 9/11 Commission and the Official Congressional Inquiry into 9/11 said that Soviet-style government “minders” obstructed the investigation into 9/11 by intimidating witnesses (and see this).
. . . The administration also opposed the creation of a 9/11 commission. Once it was forced (by pressure from widows of 9-11 victims) to allow a commission to be formed, the administration appointed as executive director an administration insider, whose area of expertise is the creation and maintenance of “public myths” thought to be true, even if not actually true, who was involved in pre-9/11 intelligence briefings, and who was one of the key architects of the “pre-emptive war” doctrine. This executive director, who controlled what the Commission did and did not analyze, then limited the scope of the Commission’s inquiry so that the overwhelming majority of questions about 9/11 remained unasked (see this and this).
And lots more.
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There are no conspiracy theorists here.
They all work for the federal government - the clever ones anyway.
And just wait till you get a load of the new ones they are now unpacking.
(August 31, 2016) Do you smirk when you hear someone question the official stories of Orlando, San Bernardino, Paris or Nice? Do you feel superior to 2,500 architects and engineers, to firefighters, commercial and military pilots, physicists and chemists, and former high government officials who have raised doubts about 9/11? If so, you reflect the profile of a mind-controlled CIA stooge.
The term “conspiracy theory” was invented and put into public discourse by the CIA in 1964 in order to discredit the many skeptics who challenged the Warren Commission’s conclusion that President John F. Kennedy was assassinated by a lone gunman named Lee Harvey Oswald, who himself was assassinated while in police custody before he could be questioned. The CIA used its friends in the media to launch a campaign to make suspicion of the Warren Commission report a target of ridicule and hostility. This campaign was “one of the most successful propaganda initiatives of all time.”
So writes political science professor Lance deHaven-Smith, who in his peer-reviewed book, Conspiracy Theory in America, published by the University of Texas Press, tells the story of how the CIA succeeded in creating in the public mind reflexive, automatic, stigmatization of those who challenge government explanations. This is an extremely important and readable book, one of those rare books with the power to break you out of The Matrix.
Professor deHaven-Smith is able to write this book because the original CIA Dispatch #1035-960, which sets out the CIA plot, was obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request. Apparently, the bureaucracy did not regard a document this old as being of any importance. The document is marked “Destroy when no longer needed,” but somehow wasn’t. CIA Dispatch #1035-960 is reproduced in the book.
The success that the CIA has had in stigmatizing skepticism of government explanations has made it difficult to investigate State Crimes Against Democracy (SCAD) such as 9/11. With the public mind programmed to ridicule “conspiracy kooks,” even in the case of suspicious events such as 9/11 the government can destroy evidence, ignore prescribed procedures, delay an investigation, and then form a political committee to put its imprimatur on the official story. Professor deHaven-Smith notes that in such events as Kennedy’s assassination and 9/11 official police and prosecutorial investigations are never employed. The event is handed off to a political commission.
Professor deHaven-Smith’s book supports what I have told my readers: the government controls the story from the beginning by having the official explanation ready the moment a SCAD occurs. This makes any other explanation a “conspiracy theory.” This is the way Professor deHaven-Smith puts it:
“A SCAD approach to memes assumes further that the CIA and other possibly participating agencies are formulating memes well in advance of operations, and therefore SCAD memes appear and are popularized very quickly before any competing concepts are on the scene.”The CIA’s success in controlling public perception of what our Founding Fathers would have regarded as suspicious events involving the government enables those in power positions within government to orchestrate events that serve hidden agendas. The events of September 11 created the new paradigm of endless war in behalf of a Washington-dominated world. The CIA’s success in controlling public perceptions has made it impossible to investigate elite political crimes. Consequently, it is now possible for treason to be official US government policy.
Professor deHaven-Smith’s book will tell you the story of the assassination of President Kennedy by elements of the US military, CIA, and Secret Service. Just as the Warren Commission covered up the State Crime Against Democracy, Professor deHaven-Smith shows why we should doubt the official 9/11 story. And anything else that the government tells us.
Read this book. It is short. It is affordable. It is reality preparation. It will innoculate you against being a dumbshit, insouciant, brainwashed American. I am surprised that the CIA has not purchased the entire print run and burned the books. Perhaps the CIA feels secure from its success in brainwashing the public and does not believe that American democracy and accountable government can be restored.
Trump's friends are longitudinal.
No, I'm not just thinking of Hillary and Bill and all the rest of the D.C./NY crowd.
I'm specifically thinking of our present-day Vlad.
You know, the terrifying Impaler.
Read the hilarious Newsweek-generated (thanks, Crooks & Liars!) article about how Trump is so undemocratic that he doesn't worry about not bombing the rest of the world into democracy, instead just wanting to do more business deals (shady ones as usual) instead of going Russian- (and Chinese-) hunting.
Not since the beginning of the Cold War has a U.S. politician been as fervently pro-Russian as Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump. Just four years after his predecessor Mitt Romney declared Russia to be Washington’s greatest geopolitical threat, Trump has praised President Vladimir Putin as a real leader, “unlike what we have in this country.” Trump has also dismissed reports that Putin has murdered political enemies (“Our country does plenty of killing also,” he told MSNBC), suggested that he would “look into” recognizing Russia’s annexation of the Crimean peninsula and questioned whether the United States should defend NATO allies who don’t pay their way. When Russian hackers stole a cache of emails in July from the Democratic National Committee’s servers, as security analysts have shown, Trump called on “Russia, if you’re listening,” to hack some more.
. . . What’s more, it’s increasingly clear that after the DNC hack the Kremlin is relishing, even quietly flaunting, its newfound role as a meddler in U.S. politics. After years of U.S. influence over Russian affairs, especially in the chaotic 1990s, it is sweet revenge for the Kremlin to be cast once again as global puppet master. And most fundamentally, the Kremlin’s support for Trump is part of a longstanding strategy to sow disruption and discord in the West. Whether it’s by backing French ultra-nationalists, Catalan separatists or the Brexit campaign, or boosting Donald Trump’s chances by blackening the Democrats, the Kremlin believes Russia benefits every time the Western establishment is embarrassed.
You can't help falling in love with those clever NSA "security analysts" in this tale of derring-do. Those Russkies! How dare they? Or not.
Doesn't matter. It works either way.
And about the origin of the War on Syria (also 9/11/01)?
Hold on to your skirt.
The day before September 11, 2001 was like any normal day in New York City. September 10, 2001 was unaware of the earthshaking events which would happen the next day.
Similarly, one might think the day before the violence broke out in Deraa, Syria in March 2011 would have been an uneventful day, unaware of the uprising about to begin.
But, that was not the case.
Deraa was teaming with activity and foreign visitors to Syria well before the staged uprising began its opening act.
The Omari Mosque was the scene of backstage preparations, costume changes and rehearsals. The Libyan terrorists, fresh from the battlefield of the US-NATO regime change attack on Libya, were in Deraa well ahead of the March 2011 uprising violence. The cleric of the Omari Mosque was Sheikh Ahmad al Sayasneh . He was an older man with a severe eye problem, which caused him to wear special dark glasses, and severely hampered his vision. He was not only visually impaired, but light sensitive as well, which caused him to be indoors as much as possible and often isolated.
He was accustomed to judging the people he talked with by their accent and voice. The Deraa accent is distinctive. All of the men attending the Omari Mosque were local men, all with the common Deraa accent. However, the visitors from Libya did not make themselves known to the cleric, as that would blow their cover. Instead, they worked with local men; a few key players who they worked to make their partners and confidants.
The participation of local Muslim Brotherhood followers, who would assist the foreign Libyan mercenaries/terrorists, was an essential part of the CIA plan, which was well scripted and directed from Jordan.
Enlisting the aid and cooperation of local followers of Salafism allowed the Libyans to move in Deraa without attracting any suspicion. The local men were the ‘front’ for the operation.
The CIA agents running the Deraa operation from their office in Jordan had already provided the weapons and cash needed to fuel the flames of revolution in Syria. With enough money and weapons, you can start a revolution anywhere in the world.
In reality, the uprising in Deraa in March 2011 was not fueled by graffiti written by teenagers, and there were no disgruntled parents demanding their children to be freed. This was part of the Hollywood style script written by skilled CIA agents, who had been given a mission: to destroy Syria for the purpose of regime change. Deraa was only Act 1: Scene 1.
The fact that those so-called teenaged graffiti artists and their parents have never been found, never named, and never pictured is the first clue that their identity is cloaked in darkness.
In any uprising there needs to be grassroots support. Usually, there is a situation which arises, and protesters take to the streets. The security teams step in to keep the peace and clear the streets and if there is a ‘brutal crackdown’ the otherwise ‘peaceful protesters’ will react with indignation, and feeling oppressed and wronged, the numbers in the streets will swell. This is the point where the street protests can take two directions: the protesters will back down and go home, or the protesters can react with violence, which then will be met with violence from the security teams, and this sets the stage for a full blown uprising.
The staged uprising in Deraa had some locals in the street who were unaware of their participation in a CIA-Hollywood production. They were the unpaid extras in the scene about to be shot. These unaware extras had grievances, perhaps lasting a generation or more, and perhaps rooted in Wahhabism, which is a political ideology exported globally by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Royal family and their paid officials.
The Libyans stockpiled weapons at the Omari Mosque well before any rumor spread about teenagers arrested for graffiti. The cleric, visually impaired and elderly, was unaware of the situation inside his Mosque, or of the foreign infiltrators in his midst.
The weapons came into Deraa from the CIA office in Jordan. The US government has close ties to the King of Jordan. Jordan is 98% Palestinian, and yet has a long lasting peace treaty with Israel, despite the fact that 5 million of the Jordanian citizen’s relatives next door in Occupied Palestine are denied any form of human rights. The King of Jordan has to do a daily high-wire balancing act between his citizens, the peace and safety in his country and America’s interests and projects in the Middle East. King Abdullah is not only a tight-rope walker, but a juggler at the same time, and all of this pressure on him must be enormous for him, and Queen Rania, who is herself Palestinian. These facts must be viewed in the forefront of the background painted scenery of The Syrian Arab Republic, which has for the last 40 years had a cornerstone of domestic and foreign policy carved and set in the principle of Palestinian human rights and Palestinian freedom and justice.
The US policy to attack Syria for the purpose of regime change was not just about the gas lines, the oil wells, the strategic location and the gold: but it was about crushing that cornerstone of Palestinian rights into dust. To get rid of President Bashar al Assad was to get rid of one of the few Arab leaders who are an unwavering voice of Palestinian rights.
Deraa’s location directly on the Jordanian border is the sole reason it was picked for the location-shoot of the opening act of the Syrian uprising. If you were to ask most Syrians, if they had ever been to Derra, or ever plan to go, they will answer, “No.” It is a small and insignificant agricultural town. It is a very unlikely place to begin a nationwide revolution. Deraa has a historical importance because of archeological ruins, but that is lost on anyone other than history professors or archeologists.
The access to the weapons from Jordan made Deraa the perfect place to stage the uprising which has turned into an international war. Any person with common sense would assume an uprising or revolution in Syria would begin in Damascus or Aleppo, the two biggest cities. Even after 2 ½ years of violence around the country, Aleppo’s population never participated in the uprising, or call for regime change. Aleppo: the large industrial powerhouse of Syria wanted nothing to do with the CIA mission, and felt that by staying clear of any participation they could be spared and eventually the violence would die out, a natural death due to lack of participation of the civilians. However, this was not to play out for Aleppo. Instead, the US supported Free Syrian Army, who were mainly from Idlib and the surrounding areas, invited in their foreign partners, and they came pouring into Aleppo from Turkey, where they had taken Turkish Airlines flights from Afghanistan, Europe, Australia and North Africa landing in Istanbul, and then transported by buses owned by the Turkish government to the Turkey-Aleppo border. The airline tickets, buses, paychecks, supplies, food, and medical needs were all supplied in Turkey by an official from Saudi Arabia. The weapons were all supplied by the United States of America, from their warehouse at the dock of Benghazi, Libya. The US-NATO regime change mission had ended in success in Libya, with America having taken possession of all the weapons and stockpiles formerly the property of the Libyan government, including tons of gold bullion taken by the US government from the Central Bank of Libya.
Enter the Libyans stage right. Mehdi al Harati, the Libyan with an Irish passport, was put in charge of a Brigade of terrorists working under the pay and direction of the CIA in Libya. Once his fighting subsided there, he was moved to Northern Syria, in the Idlib area, which was the base of operation for the American backed Free Syrian Army, who Republican Senator John McCain lobbied for in the US Congress, and personally visited, illegally entering Syria without any passport or border controls. In Arizona, Sen. McCain is in favor of deporting any illegal alien entering USA, but he himself broke international law by entering Syria as an illegal and undocumented alien.
However, he was in the company of trusted friends and associates, the Free Syrian Army: the same men who beheaded Christians and Muslims, raped females and children of both sexes, sold girls as sex slaves in Turkey, and ate the raw liver of a man, which they proudly videoed and uploaded.
Previously, Syria did not have any Al Qaeda terrorists, and had passed through the war in neighboring Iraq none the worse for wear, except having accepted 2 million Iraqis as refugee guests. Shortly before the Deraa staged uprising began, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie were in Damascus and being driven around by the President and First Lady. Pitt and Jolie had come to visit and support the Iraqi war refugees in Damascus. Brad Pitt was amazed that the Syrian President would drive him around personally, and without any body guards or security detail. Pitt and Jolie were used to their own heavy security team in USA. Pres. Assad explained that he and his wife were comfortable in Damascus, knowing that it was a safe place. Indeed, the association of French travel agents had deemed Syria as the safest tourist destination in the entire Mediterranean region, meaning even safer than France itself.
However, the US strategy was to create a “New Middle East”, which would do away with safety in Syria; through the ensuing tornado, aka ‘winds of change’.
Tunisia, Libya, Egypt and then Syria were the stepping stones in the garden of the “Arab Spring”. But, the scenario in the Syrian mission did not stay on script. It went over deadline and over budget. The final credits have yet to be rolled, and the curtain has yet to fall on the stage.
We can’t under estimate the role that mainstream media had to play in the destruction of Syria. For example, Al Jazeera’s Rula Amin was in Deraa and personally interviewed the cleric Sayasneh at the Omari Mosque. Al Jazeera is the state owned and operated media for the Prince of Qatar. The Prince of Qatar was one of the key funders of the terrorists attacking Syria. The USA was sending the weapons, supplies and providing military satellite imagery, however the cash to make payroll, to pay out bribes in Turkey, and all other expenses which needed cold cash in hand was being paid out by the Prince of Qatar and the King of Saudi Arabia, who were playing their roles as closest Middle East allies of the United States of America. This was a production team between USA, EU, NATO, Turkey, Jordan, Israel and the Persian Gulf Arab monarchies of Saudi Arabia and Qatar primarily. The CIA has no problem with covert operations in foreign countries, and even full scale attacks, but the matter of funding needs to come from a foreign country, because the American voters don’t care about killing people in Syria, but they would never agree to pay for it. As long as the Arabs were paying for the project, that was OK by Mr. John Q. Public, who probably was not able to find Syria on a map anyway.
Rula Amin and others of the Al Jazeera staff, and including the American CNN, the British BBC and the French France24 all began deliberate political propaganda campaign against the Syrian government and the Syrian people who were suffering from the death and destruction brought on by the terrorists who were pretending to be players in a local uprising.
Some days, the scripts were so similar that you would have guessed they were all written in the same hotel room in Beirut. Onto the stage stepped the online media personalities of Robert Fisk, from his vantage point in Beirut and Joshua Landis from his perch in Oklahoma. These 2 men, sitting so far removed from the actual events, pretended to know everything going on in Syria. British and American readers were swayed by their deliberate one-sided explanations, while the actual Syrians living inside Syria, who read in English online, were baffled.
Syrians were wondering how Western writers could take the side of the terrorists who were foreigners, following Radical Islam and attacking any unarmed civilian who tried to defend their home and family. The media was portraying the terrorists as freedom fighters and heroes of democracy, while they were raping, looting, maiming, kidnapping for ransom and murdering unarmed civilians who had not read the script before the shooting began in Deraa. There was one global movie trailer, and it was a low budget cell phone video which went viral around the world, and it sold the viewers on the idea of Syria being in the beginning of a dramatic fight for freedom, justice and the American way. From the very beginning, Al Jazeera and all the rest of the media were paying $100.00 to any amateur video shot in Syria. A whole new cottage industry sprang up in Syria, with directors and actors all hungry for the spotlight and fame.
Authenticity was not questioned; the media just wanted content which supported their propaganda campaign in Syria.
Deraa was the opening act of tragic epic which has yet to conclude. The cleric who was a key character in the beginning scenes, Sheikh Sayasneh, was first put under house arrest, and then he was smuggled out to Amman, Jordan in January 2012. He now gives lectures in America near Washington, DC. Just like aspiring actors usually find their way to Hollywood, which is the Mecca of the film industry, Sheikh Sayasneh found his way to the Mecca of all regime change projects.
Some of the undeclared stakes in this conflict are the plan for oil and natural gas pipelines from Iraq to Greece via Syria and Turkey. Another one is Lebanon's offshore natural gas resource, discovered in 2010, which the Turks are envious of, and which the Jews are now stealing. Given the powerful, ruthle$$ interests at work in the Middle East, my suspicions of renewed conflict were heightened after that report appeared in the summer of 2010. It would be hard to ignore the way that the conflict in Syria, falsely called the "Syrian spring" erupted after that discovery of Lebanon's natural gas. Obviously, the late President Hafez Assad and his son have long been known protectors of Lebanon. William F. Engdahl's "The New Mediterranean Oil and Gas Bonanza--Part II: Rising energy tensions in the Aegean—Greece, Turkey, Cyprus, Syria," @ Global Research, March 3, 2012, and his "Syria, Turkey, Israel and the Greater Middle East Energy War," Oct. 11, 2012 at the same website, provide further background on these matters.
Yes, oil and gas are a consideration, but the primary motivations for all the interventions are the institutional imperatives of the MIC: 1) profits for arms manufacturers and other military contractors, 2) career enhancement for military brass, civilian employees of the CIA, Pentagon, State Department, and militarist thinktanks, 3) attendant high paying jobs guaranteed by ITAR (International Traffic in Arms Regulations) for “US persons” that keep those employees loyal to the system, 4) pork for politicians and 5) blockbuster movies and sensational headlines to sell media (and also to contribute to the necessary fear and jingoism). As Jill Stein has said, US foreign policy is simply a marketing strategy for weapons manufacturers. jill2016.com
Oil and gas. May be. But if this only, humankind is not at risk. No, our epoch, unfortunately is not after-modernism as we used to hear in the radio. We see resurgence of 4 elements that were decreasing in modern days: - poverty - epidemics - wars, with questionings about the human person, law,human rights, sometimes from rulers and people who protect them - immission from potents in family management (cf ancient knights educated since childhood in the potent's palace. In time of defeat. Nowadays in time of joblessness and low salary..) All these are patterns of middle ages.
Many humans are hyper evoluted, but most of them do not know there are wise solutions for a growing civilization in inequity context. And some men want to profit from such crowds, such contexts.... A possible political mismanagement also. Because many politicians are not willing to avow they did not understand the sense of modernity and the necessary budgets, and necessary prioritization....
Awwww. Americans want to hear none of this nonsense. Give us more stories on downed planes and forest fires. And don't mention anything about climate change, melting glaciers, rising sea levels, or well, what will happen when the attacks on Syria, Libya, Yemen, Afghanistan and Iraq increase in ferocity yielding thousands more wounded refugees. Please. Is there a new "Dancing With the Stars" coming on in the Fall?
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* The offshoring of high productivity, high value-added US jobs has destroyed the labor movement. How much luck will labor leaders have organizing people who hold part-time jobs as waitresses, bartenders, hospital orderlies, and retail clerks? As I have pointed out for years in my reports on the monthly payroll jobs reports, the United States now has the labor profile of a Third World country. The absence of jobs that can support an independent existence and family life is the reason that more Americans aged 24-34 live at home with parents than live independently. The absence of jobs is the reason the labor force participation rate has declined for years. The absence of jobs that pay sufficiently to provide discretionary income is the reason the economy cannot grow.
Looking at last Friday’s BLS payroll report, the jobs are in the lowly paid, part-time service sector. The goods-producing sector of the economy lost 24,000 jobs. The jobs are in retail trade, health care and social assistance, waitresses and bartenders, and government which is tax-supported employment. Whether Washington policymakers realize it or not, the American work force smells like India’s of a half century ago.
Whatever deranged Hillary and her neoconservatives claim, there is no evidence in the composition of the US labor force that the US is a superpower. Indeed, what the employment statistics show is that the United States is a third world country, a country whose leaders are so out of their minds that they are picking fights with first world countries — Russia and China. The United States of America is on its last legs. As there is no willingness to recognize this, nothing can be done about it. . . .