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Index February 2013

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2013-02-01: So, Why That Mysterious $114 Billion Bank Deposits Withdrawal in Early January?
2013-02-01: Neues aus der Anstalt, vom 22.01.2013 im ZDF;
2013-02-02: Illegal Invasions, Rogue States, Forgotten Victims and a Shaming Plea;
2013-02-03: What Is Progressivism?
2013-02-04: Tauchen/Diving in Thailand;
2013-02-05: The American education system is creating ignorant adults;
2013-02-06: Waves of Anti-Greed Movements in the United States;
2013-02-07: Work … an introduction – DRAFT;
2013-02-08: Video with Peer Steinbrück;
2013-02-09: Cameron in Blunderland;
2013-02-10: Creative Finance: Leaving Felons in Charge of the Banks;
2013-02-11: Peer Steinbrück Discussion on the Future of Europe;
2013-02-12: The Gramm-Leach-Biley Act, the most disastrous economic act of the 20th century;
2013-02-13: Is the Euro Crisis Over?
2013-02-14: The Strategic Importance of Keystone XL;
2013-02-15: Occupied Greek Factory Begins Production Under Workers Control;
2013-02-16: Marxism and Anarchism;
2013-02-17: After the Arab Spring: Al-Jazeera Losing Battle for Independence;
2013-02-18: Interview With Haji Ibrahim Bambi;
2013-02-19: soft music;
2013-02-20: The Coup of Coups;
2013-02-21: Spain and Italy: The Euro Crisis Gnaws at Europe’s Underbelly;
2013-02-22: GMO Agribusiness and the Destructive Nature of Global Capitalism;
2013-02-23: No Winners in This Game;
2013-02-23: Benedikt war kein schwacher Papst;
2013-02-24: Our Right to Poison – part 1: Lessons from the Failed War on Drugs;
2013-02-25: Int’l protests mark Bradley Manning’s 1,000 days in prison;
2013-02-26: how the Fed could fix the economy, and why it hasn’t;
2013-02-27: China’s cyber-hacking: Getting Ugly;
2013-02-28: Meet the Poorest President in the World.

Meet the Poorest President in the World

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Uruguayan President José Mujica Drives a Volkswagen Beetle & Donates 90% of his Salary to Charity – Published on Bella Naija, by Adeola Adeyemo, September 27, 2012.

While our Nigerian leaders are being berated for refusing to declare their assets publicly and demanding astronomical pay rise to add to the already exorbitant allowances they receive, the President of Uruguay, José Mujica is getting world wide recognition and respect for donating 90 percent of his earnings to charitable causes.   Continue Reading…

China’s cyber-hacking: Getting Ugly

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If China wants respect abroad, it must rein in its hackers – Published on The Economist, Feb 23, 2013.

FOREIGN governments and companies have long suspected that the Chinese hackers besieging their networks have links to the country’s armed forces. On February 19th Mandiant, an American security company, offered evidence that this is indeed so. A report, the fruit of six years of investigations, tracks individual members of one Chinese hacker group, with aliases such as Ugly Gorilla and SuperHard, to a nondescript district in residential Shanghai that is home to Unit 61398 of the People’s Liberation Army.  Continue Reading…

how the Fed could fix the economy, and why it hasn’t

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Published on Dissident Voice, by Ellen Hodgson Brown, February 24, 2013.

Quantitative easing (QE) is supposed to stimulate the economy by adding money to the money supply, increasing demand. But so far, it hasn’t been working. Why not? Because as practiced for the last two decades, QE does not actually increase the circulating money supply. It merely cleans up the toxic balance sheets of banks. A real “helicopter drop” that puts money into the pockets of consumers and businesses has not yet been tried. Why not?  Another good questionContinue Reading…

Int’l protests mark Bradley Manning’s 1,000 days in prison

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(with PHOTOS) – Published on Russia Today RT, February 23, 2013.

Rallies, marches and performances in some 70 cities worldwide marked Bradley Manning’s 1,000th day in jail. They come days before his pretrial hearing, where the defense will seek to dismiss the charges against him due to lack of a speedy trial.   Continue Reading…

Our Right to Poison – part 1: Lessons from the Failed War on Drugs

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Published on Spiegel Online International, by Jochen-Martin Gutsch and Juan Moreno, February 22, 2013 (Photo Gallery).

The global war on drugs has cost billions and taken countless lives — but achieved little. The scant results finally have politicians and experts joining calls for legalization. Following the journey of cocaine from a farm in Colombia to a user in Berlin sheds light on why … //

… A Global War on Drugs:

  • On July 17, 1971, then-US President Richard Nixon announced: “America’s public enemy No. 1 is drug abuse.” A new archenemy had been born: drugs. It was the opening salvo in the “war on drugs.”   Continue Reading…

Benedikt war kein schwacher Papst

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Interview mit Michael Schmidt-Salomon auf Humanistischer Pressedienst h/pd, am 13. Februar 2013.

hpd: Herr Schmidt-Salomon, hat Sie der Rücktritt des Papstes überrascht?

  • Schmidt-Salomon: Ja und nein. Historisch betrachtet war der Rücktritt natürlich überraschend. Immerhin ist es in der Geschichte der katholischen Kirche nur ein einziges Mal vorgekommen, dass ein Papst freiwillig auf das Amt verzichtete. Andererseits:  Continue Reading…

No Winners in This Game

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Published on truthdig, by Eugene Robinson, Feb 21, 2013.

WASHINGTON—The standoff over the package of budget cuts known as “the sequester” is the dumbest, most self-defeating fight between President Obama and Republicans in Congress since … let’s see, since the last dumb, self-defeating fight less than two months ago.

Obama is winning this showdown, but only in a relative sense. The truth is that everybody loses—Republicans a little more, Democrats a little less. And the American people, who have a right to expect adult behavior from their elected officials, will inevitably be the biggest losers of all.   Continue Reading…

GMO Agribusiness and the Destructive Nature of Global Capitalism

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Published on Global Research.ca, by Volin Todhunter, Feb 19, 2013.

Capitalism is based on managing its inherent crises. It is also based on the need to maximise profit, beat down competitors, cut overheads and depress wages. In the 1960s and 70s, in the face of increasing competition from abroad, the US began to outsource manufacturing production to bring down costs by using cheap foreign labour.   Continue Reading…

Spain and Italy: The Euro Crisis Gnaws at Europe’s Underbelly

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Published on Spiegel Online International, by staff, February 20, 2013 (Photo Gallery).

The euro crisis may have dropped out of the headlines recently, but Spain and Italy would seem to be doing their best to bring it back. Real estate giant Reyal Urbis’ bankrupcy has raised fresh concerns about Spanish banks and many fear that a Berlusconi election victory could drive Rome to seek emergency aid … //

… Extremely Shaky: Continue Reading…

The Coup of Coups

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Published on Dissident Voice, by Ron Jacobs, February 17, 2013.

If there is one nation whose political situation has been omnipresent and important to the history of the past seventy-five years, it would be Iran. Much to the dismay of those imperial powers that have tried to subdue and manipulate them, Iran’s people have refused to go along. Islamic revolutionaries or leftist revolutionaries, military men and civilians, it doesn’t matter.   Continue Reading…

soft music

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Interview With Haji Ibrahim Bambi

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The Moro National Liberation Front MNLF is a nationalist political organization which has been waging armed struggle against the Philippines state since its establishment in 1969. Member of the Central Committee of MNLF, Commander Haji Ibrahim “Bambi”, 67 years old, met the author for an interview in January 2013 at an undisclosed location in Sabah, Malaysia – Interview with Haji Ibrahim published on ZNet, by Andre Vltchek, February 14, 2013.

AV (Andre Vltchek): Peace process, peace agreements, broken peace agreements and more process… It appears a never ending saga. You are facing Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), one of the most brutal and corrupt armies in the world; the army, which is determinedly supported by the former colonizers of the Philippines, the United States, Spain, and indeed Europe. Do you have any chance to win the war and consequently the independence for your people?
CB (Commander “Bambi”): It would not be easy. We would all have to unite: MNLF, MILF, and the Marxist groups. MILF would have to agree to join the constitutional process and agree to negotiate; something they are refusing to do. We all have to sit down and talk.
The United States, Europe, the entire West would then have to joint our effort to implement, and then support, a real peace agreement.
The peace process is in danger, because most of the terms agreed on during the Tripoli Agreement of 1976 and later at Jeddah Accord in 1987 were never implemented. The government is now busy dealing with the MILF. On top of it, the peace process would have to go through the constitutional procedure, within the Government of the Philippines. It would have to go through the Senate and through the Congress. And the fact that there are more Christians than Muslims in both institutions, even in Mindanao local Senate, would further complicate things.
Once I attended a meeting sponsored by one of the EU countries. There were also representatives of Colombia there, of Indonesia, as well as 3 people from the US; probably CIA. I told them “American brothers, you are not our enemies, are you? You were preaching to us about freedom for so many years and decades. But when you are here, you are not seeking peace, instead you are siding with the Philippines government against the will of the people.”

AV (Andre Vltchek): Peace process, peace agreements, broken peace agreements and more process… It appears a never ending saga. You are facing Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), one of the most brutal and corrupt armies in the world; the army, which is determinedly supported by the former colonizers of the Philippines, the United States, Spain, and indeed Europe. Do you have any chance to win the war and consequently the independence for your people?   Continue Reading…

After the Arab Spring: Al-Jazeera Losing Battle for Independence

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Published on Spiegel Online International, by Alexander Kühn, Christoph Reuter and Gregor Peter Schmitz, February 15, 2013 (Photo GalleryTranslated from the German by Paul Cohen).

For over a decade, the Arab television broadcaster Al-Jazeera was widely respected for providing an independent voice from the Middle East. Recently, however, several top journalists have left, saying the station has developed a clear political agenda … //

… Objectivity in a World of Censorship:  Continue Reading…

Marxism and Anarchism

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Watch this video, 64.35 min, uploaded by Doug Greene, April 17, 2012: 5th Annual New England Socialist Conference on Marxism and Anarchism (Workshop).

Occupied Greek Factory Begins Production Under Workers Control

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Published on ZNet, by Thessaloniki Solidarity Initiative, Brendan Martin, Dario Azzellini and Marina Sitrin, February 12, 2013.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013 is the official first day of production under workers control in the factory of Viomichaniki Metalleutiki (Vio.Me) in Thessaloniki, Greece. This means production organized without bosses and hierarchy, and instead planned with directly democratic assemblies of the workers. The workers assemblies have declared an end to unequal division of resources, and will have equal and fair remuneration, decided collectively.  Continue Reading…

The Strategic Importance of Keystone XL

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Published on ZNet (first on TomDispatch), by Michael T. Klare, February 11, 2013.

… The battle over Keystone XL was initially joined in the summer of 2011, when environmental writer and climate activist Bill McKibben and 350.org, which he helped found, organized a series of non-violent anti-pipeline protests in front of the White House to highlight the links between tar sands production and the accelerating pace of climate change. At the same time, farmers and politicians in Nebraska, through which the pipeline is set to pass, expressed grave concern about its threat to that state’s crucial aquifers. After all, tar-sands crude is highly corrosive, and leaks are a notable risk.   Continue Reading…

Is the Euro Crisis Over?

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Published on naked capitalism (first on Triple Crisis), by Robert Guttmann, Feb 9, 2013.

A strange calm has settled over Europe. Following Mr. Draghi’s July 2012 promise “to do whatever it takes” to save the euro, which the head of the European Central Bank followed shortly thereafter with a new program of potentially unlimited bond buying known as “outright monetary transactions,” the market panic evaporated. Since then super-high bond yields have come down to more reasonable levels, allowing fiscally and financially stressed debtor countries in the euro-zone to (re)finance their public-sector borrowing needs a lot more easily than before. Even Greece has been able to borrow in the single-digits for the first time in three years.   Continue Reading…

The Gramm-Leach-Biley Act, the most disastrous economic act of the 20th century

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Published on Intrepid Report, by Richard John Stapleton, February 8, 2013.

The Crash of 2008 was not caused by irrational exuberance, as Alan Greenspan euphemistically put it, but by greed, cunning and ambition, held in check since 1935 by the Glass-Steagall Act, which was unleashed when President Bill Clinton signed the Gramm-Leach-Biley Act of 1999.  Continue Reading…

Peer Steinbrück Discussion on the Future of Europe

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Peer Steinbrück Discussion on the Future of Europe, 42.23 min, uploaded by goodsocietydebate, 8 Feb 2013: Watch the SPD candidate for the German Chancellery, Peer Steinbrück, discuss his core ideas for the future fo Europe with an international audience. This discussion, chaired by FES London Director Ulrich Storck, was recorded at an event organised by Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung at the German Embassy in London on 5th February 2013 …;

Creative Finance

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Watch this videos: Leaving Felons in Charge of the Banks, 8.53 min, published on The Real News Network TRNN, by Paul Jay, 2 Feb 2013: Bill Black: Obama Administration following logic that to not investigate and prosecute banking fraud, see also TRNN’s YouTube Channel (also on YouTube);

Creative Fincance on YouTube-search, but in the sense of  ‘how to make more money’.

Cameron in Blunderland

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Published on Dissident Voice, by Felicity Arbuthnot, February 6, 2013.

… On Monday (February 4) David Cameron hosted Afghanistan’s President Hamid Karzai and President Asif Ali Zardari of Pakistan at a dinner at the Prime Ministerial country home, Chequers “as part of his ongoing efforts to help to strengthen Afghanistan-Pakistan relations and promote regional peace and stability”, according to The Independent.   Continue Reading…

Video with Peer Steinbrück

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SPD candidate for the German Chancellery for 2013 – Video on the Eurozone Crisis and the Future of Europe, 42.04 min, published on Social Europe, Feb 6, 2013 (also on YouTube, uploaded by goodsocietydebate,  Feb 6, 2013): Watch the video with Peer Steinbrück discussing the current problems of the Eurozone and outline his core ideas for the future fo Europe. This talk was recorded at an event organised by Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung at the German Embassy in London on 5th February 2013. This is a recording of the live interpreting of the speech, not a voice-over. The interpreter may not be held accountable for the absolute accuracy of the interpreting.

Work … an introduction – DRAFT

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libcom.org’s brief introduction to work, what we think is wrong with it and what we, as workers, can do about it. This is a draft version for comments so please let us know what you think in the thread linked to below – Published on libcom.org, Feb 3, 2012.

What is wrong with work?

For the majority of us, most of our lives are dominated by work. Even when we are not actually at work, we are travelling to or from work, worrying about work, trying to recover from work in order to get back to work tomorrow, or trying to forget about work.   Continue Reading…

Waves of Anti-Greed Movements in the United States

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Published on Dissident Voice, by Burkely Hermann, February 2, 2013.

I was doing some research for the ‘origins’ section of the Occupy Wall Street page on Wikipedia which I have had free rein on for a while now. Doing that research gave me an idea. In my Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies class, a visiting professor came in and told us how the women’s right movement is viewed as three waves, one starting in 1920, another that included the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s, and the third one that has lasted since the 1980s.   Continue Reading…

The American education system is creating ignorant adults

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Published on Intrepid Report, by John Stanton, February 1, 2013.

… What’s a nation-state to do?

So you want to privatize, corporatize, and decentralize the US education industry? You want to end formalized education at 18 years of age, as Brezezinski said in 1970? Is this the best way to get more competent American engineers, scientists, warfighters, buyers, and sellers? You want to make the US education industry more efficient and effective?   Continue Reading…

Tauchen/Diving in Thailand

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… yes, I am still in diving vacation … and it’s marvellous like ever:

What Is Progressivism?

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Published on Dissident Voice, by Kim Petersen, co-editor of Dissident Voice, January 29, 2013.

Progressivism is a term that encompasses a wide spectrum of social movements that include environmentalism, labor, agrarianism, anti-poverty, peace, anti-racism, civil rights, women’s rights, animal rights, social justice and political ideologies such as anarchism, communism, socialism, social democracy, and liberalism … // Continue Reading…

Illegal Invasions, Rogue States, Forgotten Victims and a Shaming Plea

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Published on Dissident Voice, by Felicity Arbuthnot, January 30, 2013.

The usual suspects have embarked on another mass butchery – sorry “training exercise” – in mega-resource-rich Mali, and are meddling, with lethality, in Algeria. The UK, ever keen to kill, has gone from the Prime Minister’s “no boots on the ground” assurances, to “Operation Creep” in barely over a week … // Continue Reading…

Neues aus der Anstalt, vom 22.01.2013 im ZDF

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von thepolitchannel2010 am Januar 2013 hochgeladen:  1/4, 12.09 min, 2/4, 12.09 min, 3/4, 12.09 min, 4/4, 12.09 min.

So, Why That Mysterious $114 Billion Bank Deposits Withdrawal in Early January?

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Published on naked capitalism, by Lambert Strether at Corrente, JANUARY 28, 2013.

It’s with some trepidation that I post something on actual finance, but the $114 billion withdrawal story struck me as strange at the time, and then… it vanished, as mysteriously as it had appeared. I don’t like patterns like that, or loose ends like that. So I’m putting the the mystery before the NC commentariat, in the hopes that they’ve got better answers, not than I do (that would not be hard), but than the business press did in their coverage.  Continue Reading…