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The Nonviolent History of American Independence
Rivera Sun: Often minimized in our history books, the tactics of nonviolent action played a powerful role in achieving American Independence from British rule. Benjamin Naimark-Rowse wrote, “the lesson we learn of a democracy forged in the crucible of revolutionary war tends to ignore how a decade of nonviolent resistance before the shot-heard-round-the-world shaped the founding of the United States, strengthened our sense of political identity, and laid the foundation of our democracy.”... The boycotting of British goods (tea, cloth, and other imported items) significantly undermined British profits from the colonies... Visit Website ]
Jul 1, 2016, 3:33pm

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Cuba, the unifier, promotes peace in Colombia
W. T. Whitney Jr.: In November 2012, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) and the Colombian government began negotiations to end 52 years of war... The two sides looked to Cuba; by mid-2012 the government there had arrangements in place to host the talks. Cuba provided facilities, hospitality, transportation, communications, and general support for the negotiating teams. Cuba, with Norway, served as a "guarantor country" for the negotiations... June 23 this year in Havana was the big day... End of conflict... Visit Website ]
Jul 1, 2016, 3:26pm

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The Good News of Brexit
Margaret Kimberley, BAR: This week the world has to be thankful for hubris and political miscalculation. These two factors have temporarily thrown a wrench into the imperialist project... The post-referendum recrimination and political chaos benefit humanity. The latest trade deal monstrosity, the Trans Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), is on hold for now and NATO provocations against Russia will take a back seat... Despite its well cultivated image of progress and enlightenment the European Union is not a bulwark of peace and international cooperation. It acts as America’s 28-nation gang of enforcers... Visit Website ]
Jun 30, 2016, 9:17am

Meditations
The Self Is Ptolemaic-There Is No Center
Martin LeFevre: In the first century, the Greek astronomer Ptolemy, working in the great library in Alexandria, produced his earth-centered system of the universe... Einstein and others overthrew that paradigm, showing that there is no center, that all places are relative to each other... learning how to look from no particular perspective---that is, from no center at all---is the wellspring of insight and understanding from which human beings will reimagine and rebuild this dead world...
Jun 29, 2016, 5:20pm

Links
Can the police be reformed?
David Whitehouse: The police cannot be made to do what they're advertised to do--protect and serve, fight crime, promote equal justice under the law or keep everybody safer... That's because there are things wrong with the cops that are built into the nature of the institution.... For one thing, cops are specialists in violence, using force routinely... For another thing, profiling, including racial profiling, is in the nature of the work, from the day the police were invented. Thirdly, they answer to the rich and powerful, and they spend their time policing everybody else... Visit Website ]
Jun 28, 2016, 12:03pm

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Greg Palast on US Election Fraud and Neoliberalism Gone Amok in Latin America and Greece
In 2000, George W. Bush was first elected, but he really wasn't elected. He lost the vote. The nasty secret of American democracy is that we don't count all the votes. By all modern measures, we have one of the most corrupt and least trustworthy voting systems in the Western world... About one-third of Americans mail in their ballots, and if their vote isn't counted, they don't know it. We know officially that about 6 million votes never get counted. Almost all the votes removed are votes of poor people, African Americans, Latino Americans and Asian Americans. These are all basically Democratic voters... Visit Website ]
Jun 28, 2016, 9:27am

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The Brexit Rejection of Neoliberal Tyranny
John Pilger: With the Brexit repudiation of the E.U. — in defiance of Establishment scare tactics — British voters stood up for common people who face marginalization in the neoliberal scheme of global economics... Immigration was exploited in the campaign with consummate cynicism... The reason millions of refugees have fled the Middle East – first Iraq, now Syria – are the invasions and imperial mayhem of Britain, the United States, France, the European Union and NATO... Visit Website ]
Jun 27, 2016, 12:45pm

Meditations
An End to the Old Order
Martin LeFevre: Brexit was an 8.5 political earthquake, but like all destructive events, it opens the door to creation. Can we seize it? ... The worst in human nature, when it rears its ugly head, carries with it the potential to rise to the occasion and meet the challenge, which of course reflects the best in human nature... We must begin again with a new premise: Our true identity--if identity has any truth in it at all--is first and last as human beings. Each of us belongs to this de facto global society, which at present has no cohesive principles, premises and structures...
Jun 25, 2016, 10:30am

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Revolts of the Debtors: From Socrates to Ibn Khaldun
Michael Hudson: It was to resist personal gain-seeking at the expense of the body politic and group solidarity that the world’s major philosophies and religions for the past two thousand years urged self-control, generosity, care for the weak and poor, and rules to limit the luxurious self-indulgence and anti-social egotism it bred in ruling elites. Excluding this intellectual legacy from the curriculum has paved the way for inverting today’s moral attitude upholding creditor claims against the rest of society... Visit Website ]
Jun 24, 2016, 1:40pm

Links
Smartphone Users Are Paying for Their Own Surveillance
William A. Blunden: Thanks to whistleblower Edward Snowden, we know that NSA spies think of smartphone users as “zombies” who pay for their own surveillance... The public record reveals that US intelligence services, with plenty of help from the tech industry, succeeded in making commercial products “exploitable” as part of “an aggressive, multi-pronged effort to break widely used internet encryption technologies.”... Major corporate players recognize the role that intelligence services play in terms of opening up markets and providing access to global resources... Visit Website ]
Jun 23, 2016, 12:40pm

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Orlando Massacre and U.S. Foreign Policy
Margaret Kimberley, BAR: The terms “lone wolf” and “self-radicalization” make no sense when the FBI won’t leave Muslim Americans alone, but instead lures them into “terror plots,” and the U.S. provides arms, money and protection for jihadist terror overseas. The FBI tried to entrap – that is, recruit – Orlando gunman Omar Mateen, just as the U.S. recruited jihadists in Syria... Visit Website ]
Jun 23, 2016, 12:08pm

Meditations
Syria: Obama's Slow-Motion Rwanda
Martin LeFevre: The latest estimates are staggering. Nearly half a million people are dead. Half the prewar population has been forced to move. Six and half million are internally displaced, and four million have fled the country, many to Europe where the mishandling of the refugee crisis threatens the European Project... Syria lies in ruins. The archeological remnants of one of the oldest civilizations in the world--one of the treasures of humanity--are being systematically destroyed...
Jun 22, 2016, 4:22pm

Links
Cuba’s “Battle for Ideas” Affects Us All, or Could, and Should
Susan Babbitt: Fidel Castro said that people suffer because of concepts... In capitalist societies, he argued, we suffer “unnatural separation” from our own humanity. We are alienated, not just from others but from ourselves, and from our “species essence”. To live well, Marx wrote, we must fulfill our “natural vocation” for “conscious life activity” and judge it to be a human one: “Human beings will only be complete when the real individual . . . has become a species being”... Visit Website ]
Jun 21, 2016, 1:58pm

Links
The Growing Case for Massive Taxes on the Rich
Paul Buchheit: The richest Americans are takers of social benefits. Yet they complain about paying 12% to 20% in taxes, even as respected researchers estimate an optimal revenue-producing rate of 80% to 90%, and even with the near-certainty that higher marginal tax rates will have no adverse effects on GDP growth... According to a recent IRS report, an incredible $406 billion annual gap exists between owed and paid taxes, with individuals accounting for over three-quarters of the total, and with the most egregious misreporting coming from the highest income-takers... Visit Website ]
Jun 21, 2016, 1:32pm

Meditations
AI and Consciousness
Martin LeFevre: Can AI free us to move to the next level of consciousness, where brains become aware of and have union with Mind? Or will it destroy our capacity for consciousness beyond thought, and make us subordinate to our thought-machines? ...
Jun 20, 2016, 4:38pm


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