Reflections on Class Relations in State-Capitalist Liberal-Democracies Reply

Modern liberal democratic states are oligarchies of state-capitalist power elites in practice (C. Wright Mills). But they have to afford a reasonable standard of living, level of protection, and quality of life to the middle class in order to maintain their legitimacy. States tend to collapse when they can no longer hold the support of the middle class. The middle class generally fears the lower class more than the ruling class (for a range of reasons, e.g. crime, economic competition, perceived cultural threats, status anxiety, etc). So the state will maintain the loyalty of the middle class by ensuring the lower class is effectively suppressed. Political rivalries in liberal democracies either represent different factions of the elite attempting to build constituencies for themselves (e.g. FOX News or MSNBC) or various middle class factions seeking favors and preferential treatment from the state and other elite institutions.

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“I found myself turning into an idiot!”: David Graeber explains the life-sapping reality of bureaucratic life Reply

By Elias Isquith

Salon.Com

Image result for david graeber

David Graeber, a professor of anthropology at the London School of Economics, is a man who wears many hats. He’s an academic, of course — and a respected one at that. But he’s also an author, an activist and political anarchist. But his most unique attribute may be this: He’s an honest-to-God public intellectual in an era when such figures are few and far between.

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Trump supporters just doxxed thousands of anti-racist protesters as part of a disturbing harassment campaign 4

More of the usual nonsense. The bottom line is that nothing productive will ever be achieved until dissidents and radicals are able to move past the usual left/right, red/blue, Nazi/Antifa, white privilege/Jewish conspiracy, free market/more government paradigms, and recognize that the fight is against a global system that is opposed to ALL OF US.

By Noor Al-Sibai

ersonal information belonging to thousands of anti-Trump and anti-racist protesters has been released by pro-Trump users on the 4chan message board,

The thread, which was posted on Thursday under the subject line “ANTIFA GETS DOXXED,” links to an organized Pastebin database full of information about the places of employment, home addresses, telephone numbers, emails and social media accounts of thousands of people involved in anti-Trump protests.

The Pastebin database, the report noted, has been making the rounds in pro-Trump circles online since at least April, when they released the information of roughly 3,000 people. Now, there are thousands more on the list, which has “easily tripled in size.”

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Keith Preston: Who Am I? Reply

This is the transcript of an interview I recently did with a Swiss journal.

1-In your book “Attack the System” you describe the current ideology of the West as a “totalitarian humanism,” yet you claim to be to the left of Marx (I am referring to a statement you made on the Tom Woods Show). You describe yourself as an anarchist, yet you hold speeches at Richard Spencer’s National Policy Institute. Please tell us: Who is Keith Preston?

I am to the left of Marx in the sense that anarchism was always the left-wing opposition to Marxism. This was true even in the period before the First International when anarchists such as Pierre Joseph Proudhon and Max Stirner would voice their opposition to state-socialism of the kind championed by Marx and his predecessors like Louis Blanc. Marx was so incensed by these attacks from anarchists that he devoted considerable effort to his own counterattacks. For example, much of Marx’s The German Ideology is an attack on Stirner, and Marx’s The Poverty of Philosophy is an attack on Proudhon. It was anarchists such as Mikhail Bakunin that led the opposition to the influence of Marxism in the First International, for which the Bakuninists were expelled. Bakunin was a prophetic opponent of state-socialism and predicted that if the Russian socialist revolutionaries ever gained state power they would become as tyrannical as the czars ever were. Bakunin essentially predicted much of the course of the twentieth century when state-socialist regimes ruled one third of the world’s nations. The anarchists were not only critics of the state, including state-socialism, but were also early critics of imperialism and colonialism during the heyday of these in the nineteenth and twentieth century. Marx and Engels, on the other hand, were champions of imperialism and colonialism, believing these to be historically progressive forces. All of these questions are examples of why I, as an anarchist, am to the left of Karl Marx.

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How Trump’s advisers schooled him on globalism Reply

It seems Trump got a lesson in Imperialism 101 from the national security establishment.

By Matthew Lee and Jonathan Lemire

AP News

NEW YORK (AP) — On a sweltering Washington summer day, President Donald Trump’s motorcade pulled up to the Pentagon for a meeting largely billed as a briefing on the Afghanistan conflict and the fight against the Islamic State group.

There, in the windowless meeting room known as “The Tank”, Trump was to be briefed on the state of America’s longest-running war as he and his top aides plotted ways ahead. But, according to current and former U.S. officials familiar with the meeting, it was, in reality, about much more.

Trump’s national security team had become alarmed by the president’s frequent questioning about the value of a robust American presence around the world. When briefed on the diplomatic, military and intelligence posts, the new president would often cast doubt on the need for all the resources. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson organized the July 20 session to lay out the case for maintaining far-flung outposts — and to present it, using charts and maps, in a way the businessman-turned-politician would appreciate.

The session was, in effect, American Power 101 and the student was the man working the levers. It was part of the ongoing education of a president who arrived at the White House with no experience in the military or government and brought with him advisers deeply skeptical of what they labeled the “globalist” worldview. In coordinated efforts and quiet conversations, some of Trump’s aides have worked for months to counter that view, hoping the president can be persuaded to maintain — if not expand — the American footprint and influence abroad.

The result of the meeting and other similar entreaties may start to become clear this week, as Trump heads to New York for his first address to the United Nations General Assembly. The annual gathering of world leaders will open amid serious concerns about Trump’s priorities, his support for the body he is addressing and a series of spiraling global crises.

Trump, who seized as his mantra “America First” and at times unnerved world leaders with his unpredictability, is expected to offer warmth to the United States’ allies and warnings to its adversaries, particularly North Korea and Iran. The president’s envoy to the global body suggested a presidential message that would focus on the basics on America’s role in the world.

“I personally think he slaps the right people, he hugs the right people, and he comes out with the U.S. being very strong in the end,” Ambassador Nikki Haley said.

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Keith Preston: US-N Korea war ‘devastating,’ not likely to happen Reply

Press TV. Listen here.

US President Donald Trump’s threats of military action against North Korea are “overblown” statement that would never come true, an American analyst says, arguing American military officials are well-aware how “devastating” such warfare would be.

Keith Preston, director of attackthesystem.org, made the remarks while discussing Trump’s debut speech at the United Nations General Assembly, where he said Tuesday that the US was ready to destroy the North to resolve the ongoing standoff over the country’s ballistic missile and nuclear weapons program.

“Trump is known for his blustering and overblown rhetoric,” Preston told Press TV on Wednesday. “Anything that Trump says along the lines of threatening to destroy North Korea has to be taken with a grain of salt.”

“This is a long-standing conflict between the United States and North Korea and the norm is that the countries like to talk tough against one another… but nothing ever comes of this,” the analyst argued.

Last month, when the standoff between North Korea and the US over Pyongyang’s ballistic missile and nuclear weapons programs reached its peak, Trump threatened North Korean leader Kim Jong-un with “fire and fury the world has never seen.”

The threats, however, have not gone down well with traditional US allies like the UK, France and Germany who have all called for diplomatic solutions.

‘American people have other priorities’

Preston said American military action against North Korea under the Trump administration was “unlikely” because US military officials would oppose it and the Republican “tends to be very deferent to military opinion.”

“There is a wide range of areas in which Trump has shifted his own positions out of deference to the judgment of the military hierarchy and I don’t think that the American military establishment is fund of the idea” of a war with North Korea because it would be “devastating.”

Citing the “disastrous” US-led wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, Preston said a direct military confrontation with Pyongyang would be “even more disastrous.”

Another reason that made the war unlikely, according to Preston, was the fact that the American public was preoccupied with more important problems like the economy, immigration and healthcare and didn’t pay much attention to tensions with North Korea.

 

The Largest Military Machine in History Reply

Last night, the Senate overwhelmingly approved an $80 billion annual increase in military spending. Trump had asked for just $48 billion.

That $80 billion increase in military spending is enough to have satisfied Bernie Sanders’s campaign promise to make tuition free at public colleges and universities. (You may recall that when Bernie announced his proposal critics from both parties said the idea would bankrupt the country.)

If the Senate’s military package becomes law, U.S. spending on the military would exceed the total spending of America’s next 10 rivals put together.

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Forced Takeover of Catalan Government Institutions by Spanish Police Reply

Liberal democratic capitalism shows what it really thinks of self-determination and political dissent.

Thomas S. Harrington

Counterpunch

I just got of the phone with Josep Maria Sole Sabaté, my friend and a leading Catalan historian and public intellectual. He was nothing short of breathless as he described the helicopters flying overhead stated flatly that he was in the the midst of a coup being carried out by the Spanish State.

He wanted to get in touch with me and others “out there” because he was not sure how much longer free communication would be available to him and other out in the street protesting against he Spanish central government’s arrest of members of the Catalan Autonomous government.

As of this writing at least six agencies of the Catalan Government have been the object of forced police searches and thirteen, mostly mid-level members of the Catalan government have been arrested.

The homes of two the leading architects of the incipient Catalan state, Carles Viver Pi i Sunyer and ex Spanish judge Santi Vidal, have been searched by police. The headquarters of the far-left CUP, part of the pro-vote coalition in the Catalan Parliament, has been surrounded by police.

The leader of the Catalan National Congress Jordi Sanchez and the head of Omnium, a major Catalan cultural organization, Jordi Cuixart, has called Catalans to come into the streets and they have responded with a massive presence.

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Support of the Right of Secession Rises to 40% Among American Reply

By Kirkpatrick Sale

LewRockwell.Com

While division between both political parties has been accepted as a norm for decades, we have witnessed a level of intensity in 2017 that has dwarfed anything remotely similar in recent American history. While it appears to be boiling over, perhaps many are ready to set aside their differences in a way reminiscent of the Declaration of Independence.

Over Labor Day Weekend, a nationwide poll of 800 likely voters, conducted by John Zogby Strategies asked, among other questions, which view is closer to their own on the topic of secession; Statement A: If a majority of residents within a given state prefer to have the final say over their destiny without the control of Washington D.C. then let them have it – it is their right.Statement B: If residents within a given state were to take such a drastic measure and secede from the United States, the federal government would be justified in sending in the military to prevent secession from taking place.

While nearly 1/3 of the public (32%) agree that the federal government should intervene to stop any state movement for secession, nearly four in ten (39%) agree that each state has the ultimate say over their destiny and that secession is a right. Just shy of three in ten were not sure (29%).

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Robert Stark talks to Count Fosco about the Mechanisms of the Arts Reply

The Stark Truth. Listen here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Robert Stark and Pilleater talk to returning guest Count Fosco. Count Fosco has a background in the film industry in Canada.

Topics:

Count Fosco’s background in the Canadian Film Industry
The economic mechanisms for funding the arts
Conservative opposition to funding the arts
Robert Stark’s debate with Joseph Dobrian on funding the arts
The cultural left’s influence on grants favoring politically correct demographic groups
Where the free market falls short and the importance of having an economic safety net for artist
Being an artist as a luxury for the rich and the importance of having the right connections and patrons
The fallacy that the best artist are rewarded economically(ex. Van Gogh)
Preferred relative guidelines for artistic funding and support for relative artistic freedom
How grants work for the film industry in Canada
Malcolm Gladwell’s 10,000 Hour Rule’ and how it applies to the arts
Should art serve a purpose for society?
Censorship in the Art World
The debate about what is art and what is pornography and the concept of “degenerate art”
Creating new artistic sub-cultures
Low Brow Pop Surrealism
Surrealism from Dali to David Lynch
Robert Stark and Brandon Adamson’s Art
The animated series Braceface staring Alicia Silverstone

Gold and Lord Rama- The Reason for the Diwali Season Reply

By J P Cortez

October 19, 2017 marks an important holiday in the Indian culture. Diwali begins.

Diwali is one of the biggest festivals for Hindus, Sikhs, and Jains. It is a lavish celebration of the victory of light over darkness with its gleaming candles, luxurious works of art, and opulent feasts. Diwali is also characterized by gift giving. Buying and gifting gold is considered auspicious during Diwali.

Given the nature of the holiday and the number of people who celebrate it, according to CNBC, the past few years have seen a tendency for the gold price to rise around Diwali. Last year during Diwali, Mihir Kapadia, founder & CEO of Sun Global Investments, said “As heavy consumers, the festive seasons always tend to surge the demand, and considering the current low prices, this should increase the market activity and thus push the prices a little.” Kapadia continued, “We do not expect it to boost prices significantly as the overall market is subdued due to the worries about rising interest rates.”

There is no shortage of economic analysis during the buildup to this year’s celebration as The Economic Times reported “bullion has climbed almost 10 percent on the Indian market this year as world prices increased on… reduced chances of a further hike in U.S. interest rates in 2017.”

However, history shows that rising interest rates do not necessarily make bonds and cash more attractive or push the demand for (and therefore the price) gold down. Interest rate hikes are usually a gold bullish event.

“Gold prices going down after rate hikes is a myth propagated by the financial establishment and portfolio managers who may be intellectually lazy or have a vested interest in scaring people away from gold,” says Stefan Gleason, president of U.S. precious metals dealer Money Metals Exchange. “In reality, central banks are almost always behind the curve, and real interest rates may be going in the opposite direction despite the rate hikes.”

Slaying the Beast Takes Multiple Blows

Diwali is a grand, extravagant multi-day festival celebrating many things by many different groups of people. One of the more popular tales remembered and celebrated during Diwali is that of the brave Lord Rama. According to legend, he returned from exile after having saved his kidnapped wife and slayed the evil demon Ravanna.

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America’s Jews Are Driving America’s Wars Reply

Given the recent exchange on anti-Semitism between anarcho-communist Wayne Price, national-anarchist Sean Jobst and myself, this article from Unz Review and the article from Telos posted adjacently offer two diametrically opposed perspectives on US-Israel relations, Zionism, Jewish power and anti-Semitism.

By Philip Giraldi

Unz Review

I spoke recently at a conference on America’s war party where afterwards an elderly gentleman came up to me and asked, “Why doesn’t anyone ever speak honestly about the six-hundred-pound gorilla in the room? Nobody has mentioned Israel in this conference and we all know it’s American Jews with all their money and power who are supporting every war in the Middle East for Netanyahu? Shouldn’t we start calling them out and not letting them get away with it?”

It was a question combined with a comment that I have heard many times before and my answer is always the same: any organization that aspires to be heard on foreign policy knows that to touch the live wire of Israel and American Jews guarantees a quick trip to obscurity. Jewish groups and deep pocket individual donors not only control the politicians, they own and run the media and entertainment industries, meaning that no one will hear about or from the offending party ever again. They are particularly sensitive on the issue of so-called “dual loyalty,” particularly as the expression itself is a bit of a sham since it is pretty clear that some of them only have real loyalty to Israel.

Most recently, some pundits, including myself, have been warning of an impending war with Iran. To be sure, the urging to strike Iran comes from many quarters, to include generals in the Administration who always think first in terms of settling problems through force, from a Saudi government obsessed with fear over Iranian hegemony, and, of course, from Israel itself. But what makes the war engine run is provided by American Jews who have taken upon themselves the onerous task of starting a war with a country that does not conceivably threaten the United States. They have been very successful at faking the Iranian threat, so much so that nearly all Republican and most Democratic congressmen as well as much of the media seem to be convinced that Iran needs to be dealt with firmly, most definitely by using the U.S. military, and the sooner the better.

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Conspiracy “Anti-Zionism”: The Current Face of Judeophobia 6

Clearly, we need a critique of the US-Israel relationship, Zionist imperialism, and related issues that stands apart from classical Christian and/or Nazi anti-Semitism on one hand, without simply dismissing these things a mere tools of the US ruling class. Instead, we need to develop a more nuanced analysis of the triangular relationship between Western imperialism, Zionism, and Wahhabi dominated regimes of the Persian Gulf, and the influence of both Israel and Saudi Arabia in domestic US politics.

By Andrea Pantazopoulos

Telos

The recent tripartite summit held in Thessaloniki in mid-June 2017 between the Greek and Israeli Prime Ministers and the Cypriot President to discuss energy- and security-related issues of the Eastern Mediterranean region, gave rise, again, to protests and strong reactions from the so-called political extremes against the visit of the Israeli Prime Minister to Greece. Within the context of the summit, the Greek and Israeli Prime Ministers also attended the official ceremony of unveiling a commemorative plaque for the planned Holocaust Museum in the city of Thessaloniki.

To begin with, this article discusses whether the protests organized and the statements made by the protesters (and several other political bodies) can convey some key representations of Greek Judeophobia. Far-left organizations held demonstrations in the cities of Athens and Thessaloniki, accompanied by announcements vehemently denouncing the summit. Interestingly enough, one of the main points in these announcements, namely, the denunciation of “Zionist” Benjamin Netanyahu, coincided with a similar condemnation coming from the neo-Nazi Golden Dawn organization: that was, indeed, a very striking coincidence both in terms of the target and the quality attributed to the targeted politician. The Israeli Prime Minister is challenged in the name of “Zionism”: a first indication that “anti-Zionism” or, more precisely, the demonizing caricature of the Jewish national ideology and Israel itself—their representation as a repulsive figure—is indeed the main theme of contemporary Judeophobia, contemporary post-racial anti-Semitism.

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Keith Preston: Interview with C-Realm Radio Reply

Listen here.

KMO welcomes Keith Preston back to the program to discuss the difference between absolute and relative poverty. There are a lot of people who make less than the national average, but most of the so-called poverty in the US is relative poverty. Even so, social stratification and wide disparities between rich and poor, even when the poor are not facing starvation, erodes the sense of shared national identity and makes democratic government difficult to maintain.

Keith Preston Trump’s response to hurricane Harvey Reply

This is a television interview I did with Press TV a couple of weeks ago. Watch here.

Hurricane Harvey finally hit the United States and destroyed the Gulf region, namely the states of Texas and Louisiana.

Flooding and ensuing rainfalls resulted in displacement of thousands of people and caused chaos. Like in any other natural disaster, the poor are doomed to suffer more both from the storm and its aftermath. At the White House, meanwhile, a nascent administration is being put to test amid the government’s response to the storm.

Battered by scandals, dismissals, and under pressure from many sides, the president mobilizes the government’s power in the wake of the devastation. But Hervey is not just any storm with expected consequences; it is a phenomenon occurring at a historical moment and could shed light into an ideological gulf in the US political system. What it has in store for the future of the Trump administration may not be perfectly clear, yet some officials are rushing to grab the opportunity to push their own agendas.

Handling such a crisis for an administration that is being pressured on many fronts over its performance could, of course, be a game changer but apart from that, how successful has the US government truly been in handling phenomena such as Katrina, Sandy and now Harvey? That and everything else notable about Harvey in this episode of We the People. 

Robert Stark interviews Kevin Lynn of Progressives for Immigration Reform Reply

The Stark Truth. Listen here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Robert Stark and co-host Sam Kevorkian talk to Kevin Lynn. Kevin is Chairman of Progressives for Immigration Reform and blogs at the CENTER FOR PROGRESSIVE URBAN POLITICS.

Topics:

Kevin’s political background as an unrepentant Perotista, a failed Green Party member, and a frustrated Progressive Democratic Party member
Creating a dialogue with Progressives on the key issues of how immigration impacts workers rights, income inequality, and the environment
The longstanding tradition of Progressives opposing mass immigration including the early labor and environmental movements
How immigration impacts the environment
The Sierra Club Vote on immigration and how it was sabotaged by a wealthy financier
The 1924 Immigration Restriction Act and The Immigration Act of 1965
Will The RAISE Act Raise Employment Prospects
PFIR Unveils Its H1-B Visa Database
The misconception that H1-B Visa holders are high skilled workers
The middle class exodus out of California
New Urbanism
The dilemma that progressives are misguided on immigration while Trump and the Republicans are anti-environment, and the need for a new political paradigm

 

Liberals sick of the alt-left are taking ‘the red pill’ Reply

Cracks in the PC coalition continue to show.

By Elizabeth Ames

FOX News

The mainstream media failed to see the rise of Donald Trump in 2016. Now it’s overlooking another grassroots movement that may soon be of equal significance— the growing number of liberals “taking the red pill.”  People of all ages and ethnicities are posting YouTube videos describing “red pill moments”—personal awakenings that have caused them to reject leftist narratives imbibed since childhood from friends, teachers, and the news and entertainment media.

You might say that those who take the red pill have been “triggered.” But instead of seeking out “safe spaces,” they’re doing the opposite, posting monologues throwing off the shackles of political correctness.

Their videos can feature the kind of subversiveness that was once a hallmark of the left—before the movement lost its sense of humor.

Candace Owens, a charismatic young African American, posts commentaries on her YouTube channel whose titles seem expressly designed to make PC heads explode.

A sample: “I Don’t Care About Charlottesville, the KKK, or White Supremacy.” The commentary calls out liberal fearmongering over white supremacists. “I mean there are, what, 6,000 Klansmen left in our nation. You want me to actually process that as a legitimate fear every day when I wake up?”

Not insignificantly, her video got nearly 500,000 views and overwhelmingly enthusiastic comments. (“you rock, girl!” “this woman is awesome.”)

A later episode about Black Lives Matter got nearly 700,000 views and had the distinction of being briefly taken down by YouTube. Unapologetic, Owens responded with a follow-up commentary — “What YouTube and Facebook REALLY Think of Black People.”

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