This presentation by Trevor Noah comparing Trump to African heads of states is considerably more plausible than the “Trump=Hitler” hysteria coming from the reactionary Left.
Todd Lewis and Keith Preston discuss education.
A refreshingly non-sectarian look at anarchism from James Corbett.
Corbett also has an excellent overview of the thought of Proudhon.
As a libertarian of the anarchist persuasion (one who advocates the complete and total abolition of the state), I often find myself in discussions of how a truly “free” world might look. The truth, though, is that a free world would allow for the development of many diverse and dissimilar communities that bear little resemblance to each other. While some might be thoroughly modern, capitalistic communities where trade and commerce were central to human interaction, others might be nearly the opposite.
I am not attracted to the supposed allure of socialism and communism as typically portrayed because (among other reasons) I like my stuff and I have no desire to share it with a collective. I find the mantra of “from each according to his ability, to each according to his needs” to be entirely incompatible with normal human motivation and a recipe for widespread sloth and indolence.
All that said, I’m just one individual with a worldview informed largely by my own experiences. I know people who despise the corporate environment and who would happily trade it for a simple life in a beach commune somewhere. How long they would last in that environment is perhaps debatable, but their willingness to give it a try is what is relevant to the discussion of what communities might form in a free world.
The administration of US President Barack Obama is trying to muddy the waters with Russia before the inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump, says an American political analyst.
Keith Preston, the director of the attackthesystem.com made the remarks with regards to Obama’s reported plans to introduce new sanctions against Russia.
Washington is set to announce measures designed to retaliate against what it considers Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election to allegedly help Trump with his victory, CNN reported Wednesday, citing government officials.
“Well, what this seems to be is a case of domestic partisan politics in the United States intruding into American foreign policy and international relations,” Preston told Press TV on Thursday.
Preston said the presidential race between Trump and his Democratic rival Hillary Clinton as “one of the most contentious” votes in the US history and the political fallout was inevitable.
“Hillary Clinton actually won the popular vote, Donald Trump was elected by to the electoral votes,” he said, noting that the Democratic Party was looking for a scapegoat.
Pointing to the Obama administration’s “unsubstantiated” claims that Moscow interfered in the vote, Preston predicted that the allegations would continue until Trump takes office on January 20.
“Given that the Democratic Party is till the ruling party for the time being… it appears that the Democratic Party is trying to retaliate against Russia, on the belief that Russia cost them the election,” the analyst explained.
“There are a lot of foreign policy hawks in the Obama administration with a very negative view of Russia,” he added.
Unlike the current administration, however, Trump and his incoming administration have taken a reconciliatory line with Moscow.
“So it maybe that various elements in the American government are trying to retaliate or act against Russia before Trump takes office,” Preston argued.
Economic sanctions against Moscow were originally introduced in March 2014, after the Black Sea peninsula of Crimea joined Russia following a referendum.
The new sanctions are going to be a “token gesture” more than anything else, Preston said.
According to Obama, the CIA and other US intelligence agencies are in possession of evidence that shows Russian President Vladimir Putin supervised the hacks, which targeted the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and John Podesta, a top aide to Clinton.
Putin has categorically denied Washington’s hacking claims, calling on Obama and his administration to either provide evidence or stop their accusations.
Prince of Queens’ discovery of the Alt-left
The “Milo of the Alt Left?”
Prince of Queens’ vote for Jill Stein, and why he viewed Clinton as much worse than Trump
Rabbit appears 6 minutes in
Is the Alt-left, “the left-wing faction of the Alt-Right?”
How the Alt-Left includes both left leaning nationalist and race realist, as well as anti-racist and moderate feminist opposed to extreme political correctness, and whether those two factions can be coexist
A foundation for the Alt-left
Rationalism and the skeptic community
Bay Area Guy’s point that the Alt-Right has neglected economic issues, which are crucial to millenials
Books on economics including Michael Hudson’s Killing the Host, Ha-Joon Chang’s 23 Things They Don’t Tell You About Capitalism, Dean Baker’s Rigged, and Throwing Rocks at the Google Bus
Why corporations must have incentives to invest in their communities
Prices for housing and causes of the housing crisis
Prince of Queen’s personal story about renting in the Bay Area
The FIRE Economy, and the importance of distinguishing between productive earned income and parasitic unearned income
Corporate control and private-sector oppression
Mundane working, productivity, and income
The Basic Income
Student loan debt
The need for debt forgiveness
Slavery to work, Job distribution, and Ponzi schemes
By Philip Francis
Together with Paul Gottfried, Richard Spencer is one of the founders of the Alternative Right – this being a loose coalition of non-leftists, brought together by a common dislike of the cultural left, and by a common hatred from the cultural left. How much he did to assist the election of Donald Trump last month I leave to the historians, though I suspect his help was considerable. For obvious reasons, he is unusually hated by the cultural left.
In writing this article, I could play safe and emphasise how little I agree with Richard. He does, after all, view the world through very racial eyes. He even wants to break up the United States, making its north-west into a white ethno-state. For the record, I have no opinion regarding the dissolution of the United States along racial lines, but would fiercely resist similar calls for the dissolution of my own country. It would, however, be dishonest to play entirely safe. I first met Richard in 2008, at the third conference, held in Bodrum, of the Property and Freedom Society. We next met in London in 2012, and there again in 2013. He has republished me a few times. We have occasionally corresponded. This may or may not make us friends. But it does allow me to say that I have always found him both approachable and charming. I do not recognise in the man I know the monster frequently described by his opponents.
Even so, he is hated by the cultural leftists, and they see no distinction between political debate and personal attacks. He is himself fireproof. He lives in a country where political censorship is not formally allowed. He has no job from which he can be hounded. He has long been excluded from every media outlet that is open to being scared. As for actual debate, the leftists are astonishingly shy when it comes to entering any forum in which they might be asked to provide a rational exposition and defence of what they claim to believe. Therefore Richard felt safe to plug away, all through the Presidential campaign in America, saying exactly what he believed to anyone who would listen. I repeat, its effect may have been considerable.
But, if he is fireproof, his mother is not. Mrs Spencer owns commercial premises in Whitefish, Montana. She built these with her own money, and is the sole owner. On the 22nd November this year, she claims that she was approached by Tanya Gersh, a local estate agent, and told that, unless she sold her building, and donated some of the proceeds of sale to the Montana Human Rights Network, two hundred demonstrators would turn up outside, and reduce its sale value.
Press TV. Listen Here.
The United States has protected Israel from UN action and international criticism for decades, despite Tel Aviv’s violation of a broad range of international laws, and President-elect Donald Trump will maintain that cynical policy, an American political analyst in Virginia says.
“The United States has always been unremittingly aligned with Israel and when comes to the United Nations, rarely has the United States ever broken with Israel on any issues in the region, certainly when it comes to the Palestinian issue,” said Keith Preston, the chief editor of AttacktheSystem.com.
“Donald Trump will be continuing what previous presidents have done,” Preston told Press TV on Thursday.
“It was predicted, even during the campaign, that Donald Trump will have a very pro-Israel position and he seems to be following up on that,” he added.
On Thursday, Trump urged the outgoing Obama administration to veto a UN Security Council draft resolution that calls for an immediate halt to illegal settlement building on the occupied Palestinian land.
“The resolution being considered at the United Nations Security Council regarding Israel should be vetoed,” the incoming Republican president said in a statement.
“As the United States has long maintained, peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians will only come through direct negotiations between the parties, and not through the imposition of terms by the United Nations,” he said.
The UN resolution calls for “the cessation of all Israeli settlement activities is essential for salvaging the two-state solution,” stating that the activities are dangerously imperiling” and threatening the viability of any future Palestinian state in the occupied West Bank.
Last week, Trump nominated David Friedman, a hardline Zionist, as US ambassador to Israel, likely paving the way toward a controversial decision to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem al-Quds.
Over half a million Israelis live in more than 230 illegal settlements built since the 1967 Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories of the West Bank, including East Jerusalem al-Quds.
All Israeli settlements are illegal under international law. Tel Aviv has defied international calls to stop the settlements expansion in the occupied Palestinian territories.
A must watch for anyone that wants to understand the state of contemporary Western politics and economics.
Mark Blyth, who accurately predicted Brexit and Trump explains in clear language how globalization and capitalism are failing people throughout the world and why that means more Brexits and Trumps are on the way.
There are clear signs that the Neocons running the AngloZionist Empire and its “deep state” are in a state of near panic and their actions indicate they are truly terrified.
The home front
One the home front, the Neocons have resorted to every possible dirty trick on the book to try to prevent Donald Trump from ever getting into the White House: they have
- organized riots and demonstrations (some paid by Soros money)
- encouraged the supporters of Hillary to reject the outcome of the elections (“not my President”)
- tried to threaten the Electors and make them either cast a vote for Hillary or not vote at all
- tried to convince Congress to refuse the decision of the Electoral College and
- they are now trying to get the elections annulled on the suspicion that the (apparently almighty) Russian hackers have compromised the election outcome (apparently even in states were paper ballots were used) and stolen it in favor of Trump.
With Trump in the White House and GOP majorities in the House and Senate, we must look to cities to protect civil liberties and build progressive alternatives from the bottom up.
“I want New Yorkers to know: we have a lot of tools at our disposal; we’re going to use them. And we’re not going to take anything lying down.” On the morning after Donald Trump was declared the victor in the US presidential election, Mayor of New York, Bill de Blasio, wasted no time in signaling his intention to use the city government as a bulwark against the policy agenda of the President-Elect. The move made one thing very clear; with the Republican Party holding the House and Senate, and at least one Supreme Court nomination in the pipeline, it will fall to America’s cities and local leaders to act as the institutional frontline of resistance against the Trump administration.
However, cities can be more than just a last line of defense against the worst excesses of an authoritarian central government; they have huge, positive potential as spaces from which to radicalize democracy and build alternatives to the neoliberal economic model. The urgent questions that progressive activists in the States are now asking themselves are, not just how to fight back against Trump, but also how to harness the momentum of Bernie Sanders’ primary run to fight for the change he promised. As we consider potential strategies going forward, a look at the global context suggests that local politics may be the best place to start.
The election of Trump has not occurred in a vacuum. Across the West, we are witnessing a wholesale breakdown of the existing political order; the neoliberal project is broken, the center-left is vanishing, and the old left is at a loss for what to do. In many countries, it is the far right that is most successful in harnessing people’s desire to regain a sense of control over their lives. Where progressives have tried to beat the right at its own game by competing on the battleground of the nation state, they have fared extremely poorly, as recent elections and referenda across Europe have shown. Even where a progressive force has managed to win national office, as happened in Greece in 2015, the limits of this strategy have become abundantly clear, with global markets and transnational institutions quickly bullying the Syriza government into compliance.
The Democrats’ loss on the eighth of November this year can, and still should, be made into a teachable moment for the American left and left-of-centre. The Democrats thought that they could win an election, under our current electoral rules, on the strength of a coalition of professionals, plutocrats and the traditionally-‘underrepresented’ minorities (blacks and Hispanics). But they lost, in a major way, among their traditional bases in rural areas and among white working-class voters; and this cannot be attributed solely to factors like racism (even though, yes, racism still is a real thing and we need to take real steps to counter it). Nor, it must be noted repeatedly and insistently, did the Russians have anything to do with why the Democrats lost, except indirectly.
No – there are three big reasons that the Democrats lost big in these distressed (but not minority) areas. The first one is the economy, and this is where the Democrats’ rears got handed solidly to them, with Clinton making less than no effort to appeal to working people in ‘old economy jobs’, cosying up to the big banks, and backing the same big corporate-friendly trade policies that hurt American workers throughout the entire election. The second one is foreign policy, where most white voters (and most voters in general) wanted a drawdown from wars that never seem to end and never seem to be winnable. And they particularly took a more doveish view on Syria than Clinton did.
But the third reason that the ‘left’ lost so heavily in these areas, is because they just didn’t bother with them. ‘Flyover country’ got written off. The people who live here got called ‘deplorables’. Those of us who supported Bernie in the primaries (again, most of us coming geographically from the rural North and Rust Belt areas) were accused by Clinton proxies – wrongly – of being ‘privileged’ and ‘entitled’. In short: locality (and in particular locality based in those parts of America which have been traditionally anchored in the ‘old economy’) no longer mattered to a Democratic Party, which now seems to value its jet-setting cocktail-party set, and its control over the commanding heights, over any other considerations.
This is an unusually balanced and, I think, largely accurate discussion of Trump from a left-anarchist perspective.
Long before Donald Trump’s recent electoral victory, but in a chorus that has grown deafening in the last month, people have been talking about the possible return of fascism. As terrifying as Donald Trump is, it is nonetheless important not to level just any criticism against the president-elect. And though the misogynist mogul’s favorite epithet, “just disgusting,” fits him like a glove, the charge of fascist is inaccurate.
Since we’re interested in an analysis that enables more effective resistance, and not simply in spewing, Twitter-like, any insult with a chance of sticking, it behooves us to examine just which right-wing model Trump is following.
I would argue that fascism was made definitively irrelevant by the Second World War and its aftermath, during which it was conclusively absorbed by democratic capitalism. Since 1945, when the victorious allies dismantled the Nazi state and recruited the elements they found most useful, fascism has been nothing more than a second-string linebacker in a game that is democratic to its very core. The future, of course, is full of surprises, but it would take much more than a Trump victory for fascism to be tenable or necessary again in a central capitalist country like the United States.
One of the very few actual neo-fascist parties to appear on the political scene in the last decade is Golden Dawn in Greece. True to the original model, they combined a political party and a terroristic street movement, recruiting within the police and military to create party-specific loyalty, and forging connections with national capitalists and the mafia, in order to create a dual power capable of intimidating or overriding the checks and balances of democratic institutions and non-partisan media.
Is the power elite just as fractious within itself as the wider society?
This is a blatantly politicized “report” that is not supported by any evidence, nor is it supported by the other 16 intelligence agencies.
The recent pronouncement by the C.I.A. that Russian hackers intervened in the U.S. presidential election doesn’t pass the sniff test–on multiple levels. Let’s consider the story on the most basic levels.
1. If the report is so “secret,” why is it dominating the news flow?
2. Why was the “secret report” released now?
3. What actual forensic evidence is there of intervention? Were voting machines tampered with? Or is this “secret report” just another dose of fact-free “fake news” like The Washington Post’s list of 200 “Russian propaganda” websites?
4. The report claims the entire U.S. intelligence community is in agreement on the “proof of Russian intervention on behalf of Trump” story, but then there’s this:
“The C.I.A. presentation to senators about Russia’s intentions fell short of a formal U.S. assessment produced by all 17 intelligence agencies. A senior U.S. official said there were minor disagreements among intelligence officials about the agency’s assessment, in part because some questions remain unanswered.”
Given that the N.S.A. (National Security Agency) was so secret that its existence was denied for decades, do you really think the NSA is going to go public if it disagrees with the C.I.A.?
It is nothing short of a massive paradox, bordering on the ridiculous, for the CIA to allege that Russian cyber attacks had influenced the outcome of the recent Presidential election “to favor one candidate over the other” and sought to “undermine confidence in the US electoral system.” Seriously?
For the CIA, of all ‘intel’ sources to make that claim; the least credible, the most culpable of indiscriminate destruction of sovereign nations throughout the world since 1947, some while struggling to become democracies, is directly out of their “How to Initiate Regime Change 101” playbook which has proven so effective in the last sixty years. (See “Legacy of Ashes: History of the CIA” by Tim Weiner) That is sixty years of some of the most unhinged elements in the intelligence gathering world, sixty years of malicious skullduggery as well as unbridled murders and treasonous assassinations including JFK for his efforts to dismantle the Deep State. (See The Devil’s Chessboard: Allen Dulles, the CIA and the Rise of America’s Secret Government” by David Talbot)
And now the CIA has added a new, politically-motivated Chapter entitled ‘Regime Change at Home” including those democratically-challenged Democrats who refuse to accept responsibility for the election loss they themselves created, are now publicly identified as willing pawns and co-conspirators with the CIA. What a way to rebuild the party!
By Bob Egelko
San Francisco Gate
San Francisco’s chief judge says he and his colleagues discarded 66,000 arrest warrants issued over five years for quality-of-life crimes, like sleeping on the sidewalk, because it made no sense to lock people up for fines they couldn’t afford.
The crimes, which also include urinating on sidewalks and being drunk in public, are infractions punishable only by fines. But when those who were cited failed to show up in court, judges in the past have issued bench warrants ordering them to appear, with a sentence of five days in jail for failing to show up.
But San Francisco Superior Court judges stopped issuing the warrants a year ago and recently disposed of about 66,000 bench warrants issued since January 2011. The city’s police union and some members of the public have protested, but Presiding Judge John Stewart defended the court’s action Tuesday in a meeting with The Chronicle’s editorial board.
“You’re putting somebody in jail because they’re poor and can’t pay a fine,” he said. “We got a lot of criticism, but we thought it was the right thing to do.”
By Keith Preston
American political culture has come to be defined by enormous divisions. Social psychologist Jonathan Haidt notes that present day political polarization is wider than at any time since the Civil War. Social science research finds that more Americans would oppose their son or daughter marrying someone of the other political party than would oppose marriage outside of their race, religion, or social class.
The Right and Left are coming to regard one another not merely as competitors, but as threats to the nation or even as personal enemies. Polarization has been sharpened by the election of Donald Trump. Indeed, the reaction of the Left has often been one of panic, hysteria, or terror. One leftist blogger professed to be as terrified on the night of Mr. Trump’s election as he had been when he was once arrested and put in jail. Intense polarization of this kind inevitably leads to talk of secession.
I have a fair amount of personal experience with this question. For nearly 20 years, I have advocated dissolving the US federal system through regional and local secession movements from across the political spectrum. Although I am a left-wing anarchist, I have also tried to build bridges between those opposed to, or under attack by, the US power elite from across the political and cultural spectrum–including racial nationalists.
The Trump victory has been a particular stimulus in California, where progressives have suggested that much of the rest of the nation is so out of touch with the values of their state that California should consider seceding. A group called “Yes California” has formed for the purpose of placing an initiative on the state ballot in 2019 approving California’s exit from the United States. This project has come to be known as “Calexit” as a nod to the “Brexit” referendum.
This is the direction I’ve been saying the Left should be moving is for the past 20 years.
In the era of Trump, we will need to consolidate counter-power via participatory democracy and economic self-management at the local level.
he mass protests across the United States in response to Donald Trump’s presidential election victory constitute a palpable and growing potential for the formation and constructive utilization of various anti-fascist fronts and coalitions. While these might be limited to protest and survival in typical Trump strongholds, the situation is markedly different in urban settings.
In many cities, anti-Trump demonstrations have included far-left groups, immigration-rights advocates, Black Lives Matter activists, reproductive rights supporters and a number of other political actors. Amidst calls for “people power,” these different movements together chanted “not my president!” and vocalized their support for so many other groups that have been marginalized, ridiculed and discriminated against by the president-elect.
People power need not be confined to a chant. The formation of anti-fascist coalitions provides the opportunity to convert these dreams and aspirations into a concrete and transformative program at the municipal level. What role can anti-fascism play in building this alternative?
By Jacob Sullum
Seychelles, a group of 115 islands off the east coast of Africa with 92,000 residents, does not figure prominently on many lists, but it leads the world in locking people up. It is the only country with a higher incarceration rate than the United States.
If the reforms recommended in a new report from the Brennan Center for Justice were fully implemented, the U.S. would fall from second to fourth place on that list—behind Seychelles, St. Kitts and Nevis, and Turkmenistan, but still far ahead of every other liberal democracy, not to mention Iran, Saudi Arabia, and Zimbabwe. The report is nevertheless an admirable effort to grapple with the morally and fiscally pressing question of who belongs behind bars and who doesn’t.
Between 1974 and 2007, the U.S. imprisonment rate (excluding people in local jails) soared from 102 to 506 per 100,000, thanks to changes in sentencing (including mandatory minimums and “three strikes” laws), parole (including “truth in sentencing” laws), and prosecutorial practices (including an increased tendency to bring charges). Since 2007 the imprisonment rate has declined a bit, but it is still more than four times as high as in the mid-1970s.
This imprisonment binge was largely a response to crime rates, which rose dramatically from the 1960s until the early ’90s, when they began a long slide. Today the violent and property crime rates are half what they were in 1991.
By Chris Knight
It is now fifty years since Noam Chomsky published his celebrated article, ‘The Responsibility of Intellectuals’. Few other writings had a greater impact on the turbulent political atmosphere on US campuses in the 1960s. The essay launched Chomsky’s political career as the world’s most intransigent and cogent critic of US foreign policy – a position he has held to this day.
No one could doubt Chomsky’s sincerity or his gratitude to the student protesters who brought the war in Vietnam to the forefront of public debate. On the other hand, he viewed the student rebels as ‘largely misguided’, particularly when they advocated revolution. Referring to the student and worker uprising in Paris in May 1968, Chomsky recalls that he ‘paid virtually no attention to what was going on,’ adding that he still believes he was right in this. Seeing no prospect of revolution in the West at this time, Chomsky went so far as to describe US students’ calls for revolution as ‘insidious’. While he admired their ‘challenge to the universities’, he expressed ‘skepticism about how they were focusing their protests and criticism of what they were doing’ – an attitude that led to ‘considerable conflict’ with many of them.