I have seen the enemy and it is the corporations. This is what corporations do when they get tax breaks. They are supposed to be spending the loot on R&D, new equipment acquisition, workers compensation, etc. Instead, greed ends up consuming them.
The iconic company announced that it was slashing hundreds of jobs despite expecting to reap huge benefits from the new tax law.
Tim Primeaux has worked at the Harley-Davidson plant in Kansas City, Missouri, for 17 years. He was sure he was going to retire from the company.
That all changed when Harley-Davidson told its 800 employees in January that the plant will be closing next year. Operations will be shifted to the motorcycle manufacturer’s facility in York, Pennsylvania.
“We did everything Harley-Davidson asked us to do,” said Primeaux, a welder. “To have it all blow up in your face is kind of disappointing.”
Days later, Harley-Davidson announced a dividend increase and a stock buyback plan to reward shareholders, repurchasing 15 million of its shares, valued at nearly $700 million.
Like other corporations, Harley-Davidson is benefiting this year from the tax cut law passed in 2017, which slashed the corporate rate from 35 percent to 21 percent. The company maintains that the dividend increase and stock buyback is unrelated to the tax savings.
House Speaker Paul Ryan visited a Harley plant in Wisconsin in September and said, “Tax reform can put American manufacturers and American companies like Harley-Davidson on a much better footing to compete in the global economy and keep jobs in America.”
Many Harley-Davidson workers wondered if the tax cut would trickle down to help employees. But a recent CNBC survey found that only 10 companies in the S&P 100 say they have specific plans to use the savings to boost worker pay.
Workers were taken aback by the decision to close the plant. “You could see it on everybody’s faces, just shock and awe,” recalls Primeaux. “It was like I was in a bad dream, just stuck in it.”
Harley is also building a new plant in Thailand. However the company maintains that the Bangkok plant is “separate and unrelated” to the decision to close the Kansas City plant, according to Michael Pflughoeft, a spokesman for Harley-Davidson.
Probably one of the most challenging conspiracy theories of the past 30 years for people to digest is that of David Icke’s theory that reptilian ET’s are mixed in with the elite of our planet and have influence over how it is run. To be fair, this theory doesn’t belong to David but was simply popularized by him.
I challenge you to continue reading this with an open mind, you will be surprised as to how deep this actually goes. For the record, no I’m not going to be talking about silly YouTube videos or photoshopped images showing reptile eyes belonging to the elite. We’re only going to look at very real evidence anyone can verify.
When I first realized the true magnitude of what the Pope’s Audience Hall design reveals, I was shocked. Despite 10 years of research into the elite, occult, Illuminati, consciousness, and more, this stuck out as something I just HAD to write about.
Have you heard of the Pope’s Audience Hall? Also known as the Paul VI Audience Hall or the Hall of the Pontifical Audiences, it lies partially in Vatican City and partially in Rome, Italy. Named after Pope Paul VI and built in 1971 by Italian architect Pier Luigi Nervi, it seats 6,300 and contains a bronze statue called La Resurrezione, designed by Pericle Fazzini, within.
This all sounds pretty straightforward so far, but let’s dive into what makes this building so strange. We’ll start with the less weird, and get progressively weirder as we go.
Building Method and Design
The building was designed with reinforced concrete by well-known architect Pier Luigi Nervi. Nervi is known for simple yet practical designs that are strong and made to last.
The simple curvature of the building might seem unassuming from the outside, but this is part one of what we will begin to explore about this building, and I promise you, by the time we get to the end, you will see what I’m getting at.
Have a look at the image below and compare its shape to the image of a snake beside it. Note the overall shape — wide back, narrow, rounded front, eyes in the middle, nostril at the front, and curved top.
As you can already begin to see in the image above, there are two windows on either side of the building that resemble eyes. They are made of stained glass and sit about halfway through the building’s length on either side.
In the centre of the eye shape, you begin to see a slit that could resemble a reptile eye. If you’re not convinced yet, which is understandable, keep reading.
Maybe looking at one window on its own isn’t the most clear, so let’s have a look at both of them together now.
All of a sudden we begin to see things taking shape here — two reptilian eyes, staring at you as you observe the stage.
Scales and Fangs
Have a look again at the image above — what do you notice down the centre? There stands what looks to be a statue in the middle and then on either side, two sharp, pointed fangs. The building’s roof and sides also resemble scales.
Here are two more images to give you a sense of the scales.
Now let’s pull it together a bit more so we can really see what we are looking at. In the image below, really pay attention to the whole building and stage layout next to the image of a snake. The eyes, the shape, the scales, the fangs, the look and feel of the reptile… it’s all there.
The La Resurrezione Statue
In the middle of the stage sits a statue of Christ rising from an atomic apocalypse. It was designed by Pericle Fazzini and put in place by 1977. Have a look at it below. Do you notice anything about Jesus’ head?
Aaron Dykes has been covering the Bilderberg meetings for the last 12 years and has researched the many decades of its existence. Never before has there been a convergence quite like this one taking place in Turin, Italy right now.
As Aaron and Melissa discuss, there appear to be 3 distinct areas of discussion this year, but it’s also the other events and meetings taking place at the same time as Bilderberg that might herald something very big in the works.
You can hardly blame Russian President Vladimir Putin for enjoying a “told you so moment”. He lately reminded European leaders that their all-out spat with the United States is what happens when you are too deferential to American hegemonic ambitions.
This predicament is just what the Russian leader had warned against almost 10 years ago in a famous speech he delivered in Munich on growing global disorder.
Last week, during his nationally televised marathon Q and A with Russian citizens, Putin referred to the unprecedented trade tariffs that President Trump is slapping on European states.
Rightly, Putin said those penalties were effectively a form of economic sanctions imposed by Washington on its supposed allies.
Putin hinted that the Europeans were now getting a taste of the noxious medicine that has been doled out to Russia by Western powers which have inflicted sanctions on Moscow over dubious allegations concerning the nearly four-year-old Ukraine conflict.
The acrimonious fallout from Trump’s de facto trade war with Europe, Canada and Japan was all-too apparent during the testy G7 summit held this weekend in Quebec.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau decried American “illegal” trade measures, while French President Emmanuel Macron jettisoned his earlier “bromance” with Trump to declare that the group of Western industrialized countries plus Japan may reformat as the “G6” without the US, in order to counteract Washington’s “hegemony”.
Speaking on behalf of the European bloc, Donald Tusk, the European Council President, expressed his frustration at Washington’s increasing disdain for multilateralism by saying that under Trump the United States is destroying the “rules-based global order”.But hold on a moment. Let’s go back to the landmark speech made by Putin in 2007 at the Munich Security Conference. More than a decade ago, the Russian leader delivered a blistering, prescient warning back then, when he said that American hegemonic ambitions of unipolar power would inevitably disrupt the global balance.
As far back as 2007, Putin explicitly admonished that Washington’s drive for unrivaled global dominance would end up bringing chaos to international law and order. This was during the heyday of post-9/11 US-led wars in the Middle East, which the European states all-too deferentially went along with despite these wars being illegal and unleashing ongoing global problems of terrorism and refugee crises.
Putin’s essential lesson in Munich more than 10 years ago was that the world order of multilateralism and diplomacy could not withstand the assault of a would-be hegemon, whether that is the US or any other power.
Today, the Russian president’s analysis has been vindicated, as can be seen from the shock among the Europeans and Canadians at being treated like nothing more than minions by an American bully.
Washington under Trump is showing its true colors towards supposed “allies”. For Washington, there is evidently no such thing as allies, only clients, who must do the bidding of American capitalism and imperialism. Any dissent is not tolerated, under pain of economic retribution, which the Europeans and Canada in particular are now getting a bitter taste of.
The contrast between the fractious G7 and the parallel summit taking place in China this weekend could not be more instructive.
Over the weekend, President Xi Jinping warmly welcomed Putin and the leaders of Iran, India, Pakistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan to the annual Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) meeting.
Putin was honored with a medal of friendship and described by President Xi as his best ally. All SCO delegates underlined the strategic importance of fraternal cooperation and multilateralism — the exact opposite of the debacle taking place at the G7 in Canada.
In those two events, we see two diametric visions of global relations. The G7 is all about American bullying for unipolar dominance. Whereas the SCO heralds a new world of multipolar partnership. The former is a recipe for conflict and war; the latter is the way forward for joint prosperity, development and peaceful coexistence.
Ironically, however, the incumbent European powers still don’t seem to fully get it.
Admittedly, to a certain degree, their bruised interests and sensitivities seem to demonstrate a realization that they are being used and abused by Washington’s hegemonic desires. The Europeans and Canada are huffing and puffing with chagrin and talking about “asserting themselves” without America.
Nevertheless, despite all the huffing and puffing, the Western minions still don’t seem to get it.
Paradoxically, it was Trump who said before the G7 summit that Russia should be readmitted to the forum. Previously, Russia was a member of what was the G8, but following the Ukraine crisis in 2014, the other members kicked Moscow out of the club, leveling unfair allegations that Russia had destabilized Ukraine and “annexed” Crimea.
At least Trump seems to have looked beyond that dubious affair, and hence called for Russia to be “at the negotiating table” of a reformed G8.For their part, European leaders don’t seem to have come to their senses. Apart from the dissenting voice of the new Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte, the EU bloc rejected Trump’s conciliatory offer to Russia. Germany’s Merkel, France’s Macron and the others said that relations would not be normalized with Russia “until Crimea was returned to Ukraine”.
The Europeans are hanging themselves by their own irrational petard over the spurious Ukraine issue.
Ukraine was, by far, much more destabilized by Washington and the EU’s unlawful interference than anything Russia has done. The people of Crimea voted in a legal referendum to join the Russian Federation. Europe needs to get over that illusion and stop making its futile demands on Russia.
The fact is that the EU has inflicted vast damage to its member state economies by sheepishly going along with a US-led NATO agenda of hostility towards Russia. The Europeans have slavishly aped Washington’s sanctions against Moscow for no sound reason, only based on hollow and demeaning claims about Russian “interference” and “aggression”.
More than 10 years after he told them so, European leaders are slowly realizing what Putin was warning about American bullying, unipolar dominance and its arrogant “exceptionalism”.
The operative word here is “slowly”. Europeans — the mainstay governments and Brussels establishment that is — still haven’t copped on that they are being played for minions and fools by Washington, as is evidenced by their irrational views about Russia and Ukraine.
European leaders — apart from Italy and a few emerging others — are still trapped within a servile transAtlantic role towards American imperialism. It is doubtful that the EU establishment as currently comprised will ever break out of its subservience towards Washington, despite being kicked around by the Americans.
That’s why the Kremlin’s response this weekend to Trump’s “offer” of readmitting Russia to the G8 was spot on.Russia cooly said, “we are focusing on other formats”. That can be taken to mean the SCO, the Eurasian Economic Union and the broader project of building a multipolar global order. Forums, that is, which are based on fraternal cooperation and genuine solidarity, not bullying and unilateral expedience.
In its existing form, the G7 is a bunch of losers. It’s a retrogressive world view, not progressive. Russia is better off without.
The views and opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.
Germany Was Defeated on the Eastern Front, Not Normandy
On my many walking visits to the vast Normandy battlefield in France, I kept recalling the ever so wise dictum of Prussia’s great monarch, Frederick the Great: ‘he who defends everything, defends nothing.’ On this 74th anniversary of the D-Day landings, it’s well worth recalling the old warrior-king.
Adolf Hitler, a veteran of the infantry, should certainly have known better. Defending the European coast from Brittany to Norway was an impossibility given Germany’s military and economic weakness in 1944. But he did not understand this. Having so brilliantly overcome France’s Maginot Line fortifications in 1940, Hitler and his High Command repeated the same strategic and tactical errors as the French only four years later: not having enough reserves to effectively counter-attack enemy breakthrough forces.
Germany’s vaunted Atlantic Wall looked formidable on paper, but it was too long, too thin, lacked defensive depth and was lacking in adequate reserve forces. The linear Maginot Line suffered the same failings. America’s fortifications protecting Manila and Britain’s ‘impregnable’ fortifications at Singapore also proved worthless. The Japanese merely marched into their undefended rears.
In 1940, the German Wehrmacht was modern history’s supreme fighting machine. But only four years later, the Wehrmacht was broken. Most Americans, British and Canadians believe that D-Day was the decisive stroke that ended WWII in Europe. But this is not true.
Germany’s mighty Wehrmacht, which included the Luftwaffe, was destroyed by Stalin’s Soviet Union. The Red Army claims to have destroyed 507 German divisions, 48,000 German tanks, 77,000 German aircraft, and 100 divisions of Axis troops allied to Germany from Italy, Romania, Hungary, Slovakia, and Finland.
Few Americans have ever heard of the Soviet Far East offensive of 1945, a huge operation that extended from Central Asia to Manchuria and the Pacific. At least 450,000 Japanese soldiers were killed, wounded or captured by the Red Army, 32% of Japan’s total wartime military losses. The Soviets were poised to invade Japan when the US struck it with two nuclear weapons.
Of Germany’s 10 million casualties in WWII, 75% were inflicted by the Red Army. The once mighty Luftwaffe was decimated over Russia. Almost all German military production went to supplying the 1,600 km Eastern Front where Germany’s elite forces were ground up in titanic battles like Kursk and Stalingrad that involved millions of soldiers.
Soviet forces lost upwards of 20 million men. Total US losses, including the Pacific, were one million. To Marshal Stalin, D-Day, the North African and Italian campaign were merely diversionary side-shows to tie down Axis forces while the Red Army pushed on to Berlin.
D-Day was without doubt one of the greatest logistical feats of modern military history. Think of General Motors versus the German warrior Siegfried. For every US tank the Germans destroyed, ten more arrived. Each German tank was almost irreplaceable. Transporting over one million men and their heavy equipment across the Channel was a triumph. But who remembers that Germany crossed the heavily defended Rhine River into France in 1940?
By June, 1944, German forces at Normandy and along the entire Channel coast had almost no diesel fuel or gasoline. Their tanks and trucks were immobilized. Allied air power shot up everything that moved, including a staff car carrying Marshal Erwin Rommel strafed by Canada’s own gallant future aviator general, Richard Rohmer. German units in Normandy were below 40% combat effectiveness even without their shortages in fuel.
The Germans in France were also very short of ammunition, supplies and communications. Units could only move by night, and then very slowly. Hitler was reluctant to release armored forces from his reserves. Massive Allied bombing of Normandy alone killed 15,000 to 20,000 French civilians and shattered many cities and towns.
Churchill once said, ‘you will never know war until you fight Germans.’ With no air cover or fuel and heavily outnumbered, German forces in Normandy managed to mount a stout resistance, inflicting 209,000 casualties on US, Canadian, British, Free French and allied forces. German losses were around 200,000.
The most important point of the great invasion is that without it, the Red Army would have reached Paris and the Channel Ports by the end of 1944, making Stalin the master of all Europe except Spain. Of course, the Allies could have reached a peace agreement with Germany in 1944, which Hitler was seeking and Gen. George Patton was rumored to be advocating. But the German-hating Churchill and left-leaning Roosevelt were too bloody-minded to consider a peace that would have kept Stalin out of at least some of Eastern Europe.
You may have seen his CNN program, or read a book, but you don’t know all the world lost until you first read the New Yorker essay that set his career as a journalist, educator, and broadcast star into motion.
Gastronomy is the science of pain. Professional cooks belong to a secret society whose ancient rituals derive from the principles of stoicism in the face of humiliation, injury, fatigue, and the threat of illness. The members of a tight, well-greased kitchen staff are a lot like a submarine crew. Confined for most of their waking hours in hot, airless spaces, and ruled by despotic leaders, they often acquire the characteristics of the poor saps who were press-ganged into the royal navies of Napoleonic times—superstition, a contempt for outsiders, and a loyalty to no flag but their own.
A good deal has changed since Orwell’s memoir of the months he spent as a dishwasher in “Down and Out in Paris and London.” Gas ranges and exhaust fans have gone a long way toward increasing the life span of the working culinarian. Nowadays, most aspiring cooks come into the business because they want to: they have chosen this life, studied for it. Today’s top chefs are like star athletes. They bounce from kitchen to kitchen—free agents in search of more money, more acclaim.
I’ve been a chef in New York for more than ten years, and, for the decade before that, a dishwasher, a prep drone, a line cook, and a sous-chef. I came into the business when cooks still smoked on the line and wore headbands. A few years ago, I wasn’t surprised to hear rumors of a study of the nation’s prison population which reportedly found that the leading civilian occupation among inmates before they were put behind bars was “cook.” As most of us in the restaurant business know, there is a powerful strain of criminality in the industry, ranging from the dope-dealing busboy with beeper and cell phone to the restaurant owner who has two sets of accounting books. In fact, it was the unsavory side of professional cooking that attracted me to it in the first place. In the early seventies, I dropped out of college and transferred to the Culinary Institute of America. I wanted it all: the cuts and burns on hands and wrists, the ghoulish kitchen humor, the free food, the pilfered booze, the camaraderie that flourished within rigid order and nerve-shattering chaos. I would climb the chain of command from mal carne (meaning “bad meat,” or “new guy”) to chefdom—doing whatever it took until I ran my own kitchen and had my own crew of cutthroats, the culinary equivalent of “The Wild Bunch.”
A year ago, my latest, doomed mission—a high-profile restaurant in the Times Square area—went out of business. The meat, fish, and produce purveyors got the news that they were going to take it in the neck for yet another ill-conceived enterprise. When customers called for reservations, they were informed by a prerecorded announcement that our doors had closed. Fresh from that experience, I began thinking about becoming a traitor to my profession.
The European Union is updating its 2001 Copyright Directive, with a key committee vote coming up on June 20 or 21; on GDPR day, a rogue MEP jammed a mass censorship proposal into the draft that is literally the worst idea anyone in Europe ever had about the internet, ever.
Under “Article 13,” sites that allow the public to post anything that might be copyrighted — text, pics, videos, games, sounds, code — will have to run user submissions through a copyright filter that will check to see if it matches the a known copyrighted work. It’s YouTube’s perennially busted, overblocking Content ID, but for everything from Github to the copyrighted images on that band tee you wore in your Tinder profile.
These black boxes will have the unaccountable power of life or death over everything Europeans say to each other online. They’ll ingest everything we say to each other — likely sending it to one of the giant American tech companies that specialise in this kind of filtering — and render a judgment.
Anyone can add to the blacklist, too: under Article 13, sites have to let people claim new copyrighted works — but the rule has no penalties for abuse. Trolls can lay claim to every word ever posted to Wikipedia and stop anyone from quoting it on a WordPress site or Twitter or Facebook.
If you get censored, your only recourse is to ask the site to reconsider its algorithmic judgment. If they won’t listen or don’t agree, you have to hire a lawyer to sue to get your free speech back.
So far, this has flown under mainstream radar. A few right-wing sites like Breitbart have picked up on it, and well they should, because the conservative and eurosceptic parties are backing this proposal, even though it will make it vastly harder to start new sites where unpopular speech can be heard. It’s one thing to pass the hat around to start a right-wing version of Twitter, it’s another thing to cough up $60,000,000 to clone YouTube Content ID to comply with European law.
But this affects all politics, and all movements. The whole point of this exercise is to make Google pay German newspapers royalties for linking to newspapers, and you can bet Google and Facebook and the other Big Tech companies will figure out how to comply with it. But as those companies increasingly block and filter speech at the behest of governments, the ability of #BlackLivesMatter or the movement to stop the new Heathrow runway will also have to come up with $60,000,000 if they get kicked off the big platforms for not colouring in the lines.
Article 13 gets Wikipedia coming and going: not only does it create opportunities for unscrupulous or incompetent people to block the sharing of Wikipedia’s content beyond its bounds, it could also require Wikipedia to filter submissions to the encyclopedia and its surrounding projects, like Wikimedia Commons. The drafters of Article 13 have tried to carve Wikipedia out of the rule, but thanks to sloppy drafting, they have failed: the exemption is limited to “noncommercial activity”. Every file on Wikipedia is licensed for commercial use.
Then there’s the websites that Wikipedia relies on as references. The fragility and impermanence of links is already a serious problem for Wikipedia’s crucial footnotes, but after Article 13 becomes law, any information hosted in the EU might disappear—and links to US mirrors might become infringing—at any moment thanks to an overzealous copyright bot. For these reasons and many more, the Wikimedia Foundation has taken a public position condemning Article 13.
Speaking of references: the problems with the new copyright proposal don’t stop there. Under Article 11, each member state will get to create a new copyright in news. If it passes, in order to link to a news website, you will either have to do so in a way that satisfies the limitations and exceptions of all 28 laws, or you will have to get a license. This is fundamentally incompatible with any sort of wiki (obviously), much less Wikipedia.
It also means that the websites that Wikipedia relies on for its reference links may face licensing hurdles that would limit their ability to cite their own sources. In particular, news sites may seek to withhold linking licenses from critics who want to quote from them in order to analyze, correct and critique their articles, making it much harder for anyone else to figure out where the positions are in debates, especially years after the fact. This may not matter to people who only pay attention to news in the moment, but it’s a blow to projects that seek to present and preserve long-term records of noteworthy controversies. And since every member state will get to make its own rules for quotation and linking, Wikipedia posts will have to satisfy a patchwork of contradictory rules, some of which are already so severe that they’d ban any items in a “Further Reading” list unless the article directly referenced or criticized them.
In 2015, ninety-two American missile officers were suspended because they had been cheating, taking drugs, or sleeping in the missile silos. These men are employed to guard and to operate 150 nuclear missiles at F.E. Warren Air Force Base in Wyoming which constitutes one-third of the 400 Minuteman 3 missiles that stand “on hair trigger alert” 24 hours a day in silos which are scattered across the northern Great Plains.
Two officers aged between 22 and 27 are in charge of each missile silo, and each man is armed with a pistol to shoot the other if one shows signs of deviant behaviour.
The missile silos are equipped with antiquated equipment including floppy disks and telephones that often don’t work. Each Minuteman 3 missile contains three hydrogen bombs, almost 50 times the explosive power of the Hiroshima bomb. The officers in charge of these deadly weapons are clearly expected to follow strict behavioural standards at all times.
During the investigation, fourteen airmen had allegedly been using cocaine. Other drugs involved were ecstasy, cocaine, LSD and marijuana. All in all roughly one hundred officers were involved in the cheating scandal in 2015 and 2016.
Airman 1st Class Nickolos A. Harris, said to be the leader of the drug ring, testified that he had no trouble obtaining LSD and other drugs from civilian sources and he pleaded guilty to using and distributing LSD plus ecstasy, cocaine and marijuana.
A side note – because LSD had showed up so infrequently in drug tests across the military, in December 2006 the Pentagon eliminated LSD screening from standard drug-testing procedures.
In more episodes of gross malfeasance, 2013 Vice Admiral Timothy Giardina, the head of the U.S. Strategic Command, was sacked for illegal gambling while Major General Michael Carey, a man in charge of all of the 450 intercontinental ballistic missile silos, was dismissed after a visit to Moscow when he became inebriated and insisted on singing in Russian night clubs, while cavorting with inappropriate women.
Considering all of these facts among many others, it is amazing to me that we are still here having not been incinerated in a global nuclear holocaust. Suffice it to say, we are in the hands of fallible men armed to the teeth with missiles and hydrogen bombs.
(CJ Opinion) — Well I’ll be damned, it’s about time.
According to a new report by the Sydney Morning Herald, officials from Australia’s High Commission have just been spotted leaving the Ecuadorian embassy in London, accompanied by Julian Assange’s lawyer Jennifer Robinson. Robinson confirmed that a meeting had taken place, but declined to say what it was about “given the delicate diplomatic situation.”
So, forgive me if I squee a bit. I am aware how subservient Australia has historically been to US interests, I am aware that those US interests entail the arrest of Assange and the destruction of WikiLeaks, and I am aware that things don’t often work out against the interests of the US-centralized empire. But there is a glimmer of hope now, coming from a direction we’ve never seen before. A certain southerly direction.
If the Australian government stepped in to protect one of its own journalists from being persecuted by the powerful empire that has dragged us into war after war and turned us into an asset of the US war/intelligence machine… well, as an Australian it makes me tear up just thinking about it. It has been absolutely humiliating watching my beloved country being degraded and exploited by the sociopathic agendas of America’s ruling elites, up to and including the imprisonment and isolation of one of our own, all because he helped share authentic, truthful documents exposing the depraved behaviors of those same ruling elites. I have had very few reasons to feel anything remotely resembling patriotism lately. If Australia brought Assange home, this would change.
We Australians do not have a very clear sense of ourselves; if we did we would never have stood for Assange’s persecution in the first place. We tend to form our national identity in terms of negatives, by the fact that we are not British and are not American, without any clear image about what we are. A bunch of white prisoners got thrown onto a gigantic island rich with ancient indigenous culture, we killed most of the continent’s inhabitants and degraded and exploited the survivors, and now we’re just kind of standing around drinking tea as the dust settles saying, “Hmm… well, we’re not stuck-up like the Brits, and we’re not entitled like the Yanks.”
That’s pretty much our entire nation right now. A beautiful continent where the Aboriginal Dreamtime has been paved over with suburbs and shopping centers. We are a warm and charitable people, we value family and community, but we’ve got no sense of who we are and what it means to be Australian.
We try sometimes; there are attempts to uplift Australian art and culture which we call Australiana. I remember going to “bush dances” as a kid where old-timey settler music was played and everyone pretended to have some kind of connection with it. We like meat pies. The footy’s great. But our sense of ourselves has never really taken root.
Which is ultimately why attempts to assert our sovereignty, to leave the British commonwealth and stop having that ugly old woman’s face on our money have fallen short. It is also why we had no problem subjugating ourselves as a functional vassal state of the US as it emerged as a dominant superpower following the world wars. If we’d had a clear image of ourselves, what we stand for, and what our best interests are, this never would have happened. But because of our background we’ve been like the home schooled teenager going to high school for the first time and instantly being absorbed into a bad crowd because she didn’t understand the social dynamics.
I went to a community theater with my family the other day to see Spring Awakening, an English-language musical set in Germany. For no apparent reason, the actors on the stage spoke in American accents. They were Australians playing Germans, not Americans; there was no reason whatsoever for that to happen. But that sort of thing is so commonplace here the only person who pointed it out was my American husband. It seemed perfectly normal to me.
But it isn’t normal. It isn’t normal for a nation of people to be so neurotic and ashamed of their own nationality that they put on a foreign accent rather than their own for no reason. It isn’t normal that we have such a head-down, subservient society that most of our homegrown talent leaves Australia forever because we’ve got a weird slave-culture habit of cutting down the “tall poppies” whenever anyone is perceived to have risen above their station. It isn’t normal that we feel so ashamed of standing tall and shining bright in the world.
Nowadays the closest non-Aboriginal thing you ever see to a display of Australian identity typically involves Southern Cross tattoos, thuggishness, Islamophobia, and a desire to continue the cruel warehousing of human beings on Manus Island. That is plainly gross, and the Aboriginal people now hold their culture secret and close to their chests for completely understandable reasons, so what else is there? What else could there be that could begin to unite us as a people so we can begin to develop a little collective pride and cease allowing ourselves to be used as a tool of sociopathic imperialists?
Well, there’s Julian Assange. He’s something positive that we can all fight for, a clear force of good in the world that we can unify around as we begin a slow, sloppy, completely necessary divorce from the cancer of empire.
Assange confuses Americans in the same way Mountain Dew confuses me. Americans don’t have any cultural hook-ups for the kind of creature he is. In the same way that Mountain Dew looks, tastes, smells and feels like poison to me, they can’t tell if he’s right wing or left, if he’s a hero or a villain, or what motivates him. They don’t trust him because they don’t know what they’re looking at. As someone who grew up around the same time, in the same area, and in similar social circles to him, it seems very obvious to me what he is. And what he is is very Australian.
Every country has its flavor. In my country, we grew up valuing innovation. Most people my age can reel off a list of Australian inventions, from the Hills Hoist to the postage stamp to the bionic ear to wifi. I did not even have to go and google that just now, that’s how much a part of our national conversation and our education is our pride in our use of insight for practical problem-solving.
There are some fundamental values that we grew up with as seventies children in Australia. There was the value of “do the right thing,” the value of “giving everyone a fair go”, and the value of “keeping the bastards honest.” These were key and oft-repeated phrases in my childhood during the seventies and eighties. Remember, we were small when there was a CIA/MI6 coup in our country and our parents were implored by the ousted Prime Minister Gough Whitlam to “maintain the rage” at the unforgivable attack on our democratic sovereignty. That’s in my living memory. When Julian and I were small, anti-establishment sentiment was at its loudest.
We have an inbuilt distrust of authority and a deep hatred of empire which probably stems from our convict roots, and then from the ongoing waves of refugees who were running from famine, wars and despotism. Aside from the indigenous population, we are a country full of people who were forced by empire to come here in one way or another. So we don’t like authority much and we instinctively cut people down before they get too powerful. This is why the unions are still strong and social programs are such a natural fit for us. We like things to be fair. We like everyone to have a say.
Julian Assange’s work is an embodiment of all those values. The initial innovative use of technology to create WikiLeaks, the belief in openness and transparency, the desire to democratize information for the good of the whole, and the joy in keeping the bastards honest — all of that is very Australian. Very child of a strong Mum and brought up in Melbourne. Very me. My seed took root in similar soil. He seems obvious to me.
His work is extraordinary. Never has a single innovation brought power to its knees in such a short amount of time. In an inverted totalitarian system where the ability to suck resources from the people is hidden under a veil of propaganda, the ability to rip through the veil of spin and government opacity is a powerful tool indeed. In just a little over a decade he has managed to make himself the most wanted man alive by the most powerful people on earth. That’s how effective WikiLeaks has been in bringing truth to power.
And those in power don’t like him, and of course they use their propaganda machine to obfuscate who he is and what he is doing, but his actions tell his story even through the fog of the spin machine. His relentless drive to publish the truth no matter which side of the aisle it’s about, whichever powerful faction it is going to piss off, and how that’s going to impact his own living situation says everything you need to know about Julian Assange. He keeps publishing even when it’s clearly to his own personal detriment. He cares less about himself than he does about the truth getting out there. That tells me everything I need to know.
And every day of his detention proves his theory correct. He is keeping the bastards honest and because they aren’t honest, they don’t like it one bit.
Bringing Julian Assange home could be the first step to giving ourselves a bright, shining image of who we are and what we stand for. At the moment, Australia is a lifeless vassal state hooked up to the US power establishment with our every orifice and resource being used to feed the corporatist empire. Anesthetized to the eyeballs and in a state of total submission, the return of Julian might just be the little spark we need to get the old ticker pumping for itself again. Finally standing up for ourselves, for what’s right, and for the things that Julian stands for might just be the very thing we need as a nation to discover who we really are.
Bring him home. It’s time.
I’ll be at the solidarity vigil for Julian Assange in Melbourne on June 19th. Please come join me if you are able. Click here for more info.
Through a lack of education many continue to be deceived into believing the corporate/banker sponsored fake science. The spin is made by paid off crooked scientific establishments, phony front men and tightly controlled mainstream media outlets for the ulterior motives, control and profit.
Those people not understanding this may consequentially suffer. A lack of education or understanding the fake science could lead to much harm through making a number of bad choices. Further, it will take double the efforts to re-educate: Deconstruct the misinformation, lies and propaganda related to the fake science in order to benefit from learning the real scientific knowledge.
To protect your physical, mental, health and well-being, here are 5 fake science sources and how they could lead to your harm if not carefully discerned:
1. Crooked research establishments
To understand how crooked scientific establishments work you have to realize that they are uncompromisingly tied into not just corporate moneyed interests, but also scientific and political agendas. Thus, essentially, through filtering, the science follows a narrow academic approach. -To get some idea of the background behind this narrow approach consider, for example, how Big Pharma stops its competitors and monopolizes the health industry.
In order to get results for its sponsors research establishments may prevaricate, mislead, misrepresent, exaggerate, cherry-pick data, falsify, suppress or ignore contradictory information…
-These are just some of the tricks used in their crooked bad science.
In retrospect, the key to realize is that this allows a number of products to go onto the markets that have not had proper scientific evaluation (helped along by crooked approval bodies such as the FDA).
If you come into contact with these products they could lead to your harm. Research the researchers and the products. Learn to discern the bad science and how the resulting products could harm you.
2. Biotech companies
Biotech companies and their GMO’s (genetically modified organisms) is a classic example of how twisted research has gone on to give rise to harmful products.
For years, many researchers have been working on GMO’s with the erroneously oversimplified understanding that the modification of one gene would in effect produce one protein. As time has gone by, it has come to light that instead of just producing one beneficial protein, other unwanted or potentially harmful proteins have also been unexpectedly produced. –Such is what happens when ‘tinkering’ with life:
Not really knowing what’s going on those in biotech labs have managed to fool the public through fake science into believing that GMO’s are healthy food sources, environmentally friendly and can feed the world with efficient production…
GMO’s with their toxic genes and the nasty chemicals used such as the known carcinogen glyphosate, the active ingredient in the weed killer Monsanto’s Roundup, have contributed to numerous allergies and illnesses.
Stop believing the GMO charlatans, tricksters, disinformation merchants and propagandists… Say NO to GMO. Eat organic food. Grow your own food…
3. Fake science journals
Don’t fall for the ‘scientific’ journals scripted by corporate paid off fake scientists and huckster shill journalists. It’s startling to know that many ‘peer-reviewed’ journals such as JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association) revered by many doctors are filled with fake science. So beware of those doctors acting on false health information when treating you. Many of these journals are losing their credibility, as significant amounts of their research information have been exposed as fake.
Don’t fall for the mainstream media fear mongering trying to manipulate your ‘thought infrastructure.’ For instance, don’t fall for the recurring movie script making up the anatomy of a false flag disease, covertly manufactured for the usual ulterior motives of power, profit and political gains…
4. Fake science front men
What could be more effective in deceiving the masses than to have a number of pseudo-scientists, propagandist front men to keep the fake science effrontery going? These well-presented eloquent mainstream media front men masquerade as caring individuals. But underneath their glib effrontery, in their scientific illiteracy, they represent a number of hidden, destructive, harmful political agendas.
Besides, for examples, promoting the lies that GMO’s and vaccines as safe and effective, or falsely demonizing cholesterol allowing Big Pharma to push their unnecessary and potentially harmful money-spinning statins.., they also support the man-made CO2 climate change myth.
They claim that they’re ‘saving the world’ by having a hand in reducing environmental CO2. –This is a dangerous life-threatening practice. If allowed to go on unheeded, it could devastate plant life which requires adequate CO2 supplies in the atmosphere for photosynthesis and in turn could seriously affect our food chains threatening species extinction in a scarcity of this vital gas.
Currently there is, in fact, a CO2 shortage. Data has shown that CO2 levels have been some 15 times higher in previous years…
5. Misleading marketing
Don’t fall for deceptive misleading marketing, making claims based on fake science with its empty rhetoric. Learn to safeguard yourself from buying slickly advertised products that have hidden potentially harmful effects.
Don’t fall, for examples, for unlabelled GMO’s, in-your-face advertising of junk foods, the ‘fat-free’ slogans (didn’t it tell us in our school biology texts books that fat is an essentially dietary requirement?)… Then there are the pill pushers, advertising pharmaceuticals that not only have ill side-effects but also canvas the fact that they can cause the very illness they’re supposed to treat…
One of the biggest nightmares for an R & D scientist is the discovery that a product released into the market has unforeseen harmful long-term effects on its consumers. Instead of being pulled off the market, many corporations use their sales, advertising and marketing to cover up the harm.
Wireless and ‘smart meters’ couldn’t be a better examlple of this. Take a look at the trailer of a recent documentary ‘Generation Zapped’ warning the public:
It may come as a shock to some that a number of potentially harmful technology products have been allowed be produced for the ulterior motive of causing harm. For more on this go,HERE.
That concludes just 5 fake science sources to beware of.
Much of our science and the scientific approach is grossly rigged, involving a number of individuals lacking in integrity, as they collude with each other for control.
The solution is to be your own decider: For your own physical, mental, health and well-being stop making decisions based solely on the opinions of ‘expert’ authority figures, deceptive marketers and the general consensus of the masses that unquestioningly follow on. –Make decisions based on your own diligent research.
The deepening poverty and income inequality in the United States threaten America’s social stability and political system, which is dominated by the country’s financial markets, says a peace activist and congressional candidate in New York.
Poverty in the United States is extensive and growing under the administration of President Donald Trump, whose policies seem aimed at removing the safety net from millions of poor people, while rewarding the rich, a UN human rights investigator has found.
As welfare benefits and access to health insurance were being slashed, Trump’s tax overhaul awarded “financial windfalls” to the mega-rich and large companies, further increasing inequality, Philip Alston, UN special rapporteur on extreme poverty, said in a report published Monday.
Alston called on US authorities to provide solid social protection and address underlying problems, rather than “punishing and imprisoning the poor”.
“This report is very alarming, because it shows that the international community is waking up and declaring unacceptable things that for far too long have been considered unacceptable; the widening gaps between the haves and have-nots,” said Sander Hicks, who’s running as independent candidate for Congress in this year’s mid-term elections.
“This is not for political stability, it’s not good for justice, it’s not good for a country that supposed to be a spiritual country, a country under God, but we’ve seem to have gone away from that, we’ve seem to be a country dominated by big money, by Wall Street; Wall Street controls both [political] parties,” Hicks told Press TV in a phone interview on Thursday.
Almost 41 million people in the US, or 12.7 percent, live in poverty, 18.5 million in extreme poverty, and children account for one in three poor, according to government data.
Alston said that a tax overhaul that passed the Republican-controlled US Congress in December will ensure the United States remains the most unequal society in the developed world.
Extreme poverty in the United States, however, is not new. Alston said US policies since former President Lyndon Johnson in the 1960s, including the so-called war on poverty, have been “neglectful at best.”
The international law scholar said invested interests in the US have made a “political choice” to preserve acute poverty in the country.
“At the end of the day, however, particularly in a rich country like the United States, the persistence of extreme poverty is a political choice made by those in power,” Alston wrote. “With political will, it could readily be eliminated.”
“Our citizens should know the urgent facts…but they don’t because our media serves imperial, not popular interests. They lie, deceive, connive and suppress what everyone needs to know, substituting managed news misinformation and rubbish for hard truths…”—Oliver Stone