Showing posts from October 29, 2016

Liberalism and capitalism have hollowed out society – so where do we turn now?

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[Is the world ready to hear about politics and virtue in the same breath? Can we afford not to? I'm going to see if I can download a sample chapter. *RON*]
Rowan Williams, The New Statesman, 18 October 2016

The Politics of Virtue: Post-Liberalism and the Human Future by John Milbank and Adrian Pabst is published by Rowman & Littlefield International (£24.95, 418pp)

There are crises and there are “meta­crises”: a system may stagger from one crisis to another but never recognise the underlying mechanisms that subvert its own logic. We may never even get to the “final” crisis that some analysts predict; but so long as the inner contradictions are not named, the story will always be one of cyclical failure.

This is a book about metacrises. Capitalism, democracy, nation-state politics, modern culture and education – all of these are living out a metacrisis of some sort. All of them are grounded in illusion and contradiction, whether it be the si…

'Terrifying': AT&T Spying on Americans for Profit, New Documents Reveal

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[Corporatocracy = surveillance state = police state = the 1%. 'If companies are allowed to operate in this manner without repercussions, our democracy has no future.' They're not being forced to reveal information. They developed a new product to sell your information to police. See also: AT&T developed a "product" for spying on all its customers and made millions selling it to warrantless cops. And, while you're at it, how about: Police departments are thinking about using drones armed with stun guns. *RON*]

Nadia Prupis,Common Dreams, 25 October 2016

Telecommunications giant AT&T is spying on Americans for profit and helped law enforcement agencies investigate everything from the so-called war on drugs to Medicaid fraud—all at taxpayers' expense, according to new reporting by The Daily Beast.

The program, known as Project Hemisphere, allowed state and local agencies to conduct warrantless searches of trilli…

Thousands of Canadians raise their voices against TPP

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["The Standing Committee on International Trade has set a deadline of Monday, Oct. 31 for public comment. To send your message to them and the Prime Minister, please click here." See also: Citizen’s guide to Trans-Pacific Partnership now available. *RON*]
Brent Patterson,, 27 October 2016

Council of Canadians delivered 20,000 petitions against the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal to Parliament Hill.

"It’s difficult to imagine a world where Canada would turn its back on [the Trans-Pacific Partnership given it includes] three of its top five trading partners. We established very clearly during the campaign that we’re a pro-trade party," said Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Tuesday.

The Council of Canadians delivered the petition Wednesday to voice the objections of 20,000 people from across this country that can imagine a world where fair trade is prioritized over corporate rights agreements like the TPP.

Nomi Prins: Hillary Clinton Will Continue the Big Bank Protection Racket

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[See also: Waking Up in Hillary Clinton's United States: Wall Street in the SaddleElizabeth Warren Tells Hillary Clinton Not To Hire Wall Street Donors; What a Hillary Clinton Presidency Means for Your Financial Future - Hint: It’s not looking good; and Hillary Clinton’s Wall Street Speeches Have Leaked. No Wonder She Didn’t Want Them to Get Out. *RON*]
By Nomi Prins, posted by Yves Smith, Naked Capitalism, 28 October 2016

Yves here. It’s hardly a secret that the Clintons are deeply loyal to Wall Street. Bob Rubin and his numerous well-heeled followers are a powerful, arguably dominant, faction in the Democratic party, and they are tightly aligned with the Clintons.

Nomi Prins gives a useful overview of how Hillary has attempted to blame the financial crisis on everything but the deregulation that her husband supported and the reckless behavior that resulted and how her anti-bank noises, like her criticism of Wells Fargo, is tepid and lat…

US Votes 'No' As UN Adopts Landmark Resolution Calling to Ban Nuclear Weapons

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[Canada voted against it as well! Co-sponsored by 57 nations, L41 calls for a 2017 conference 'to negotiate a legally binding instrument to prohibit nuclear weapons, leading towards their total elimination.' *RON*]
Lauren McCauley,Common Dreams, 27 October 2016

The United Nations on Thursday adopted a landmark resolution calling for the ultimate elimination of nuclear weapons worldwide.

Resolution L.41 (pdf) was accepted by a vote of 123-38, with 16 member nations abstaining. The vote was held during a meeting of the First Committee of the UN General Assembly, which deals with disarmament and international security matters.

"For seven decades, the UN has warned of the dangers of nuclear weapons, and people globally have campaigned for their abolition. Today the majority of states finally resolved to outlaw these weapons," said Beatrice Fihn, executive director of International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear weapons (ICAN).

Trudeau heading to Brussels to sign CETA; fate of key section still in doubt

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[Obviously a pretty fluid story. The key thing today is that the "investor-state dispute settlement mechanism.... does not take effect right away and may never take effect... If one country votes to reject the investor court, it will not form part of the Canada-EU deal." The original Canadian articles complained that CETA would drive up prescription drug prices here: this is the story we'll be waiting to see as this progresses. See also: We can thank Walloons for seeing CETA’s naked truth. *RON*]

Steven Chase, Globe and Mail, 28 October 2016

Justin Trudeau is heading to Brussels this weekend to sign the massive Canada-European Union free trade deal after the EU finally approved it on Friday, but the fate of the accord’s most contentious chapter – a court where businesses can sue governments – remains in serious doubt and may not be resolved for years.
The European Council, representing all 28 member-state governments, reached the ne…