Since September 11, 2001, The War on Terror has expanded violently across the globe. Hundreds of thousands, perhaps over a million, are dead, a vast majority of people in the Middle East view the US as an enemy and radicalized groups have grown, trillions of dollars have been spent, and there is no end in sight. It’s a massive fucking disaster. Read this pithy summary in the Intercept.
This interview with Marc Lamont Hill & Mychal Denzel Smith is one of the most important things I’ve seen in a while and covers so much. Police killings of black people, racism, white supremacy, class, mental health, patriarchy, it’s all interconnected and the failings of capitalism are at the root of it all.
There is a big money war blood triangle happening with the Clintons, foreign nations, and defense contractors. It works like this: defense contractors and nations donate millions of dollars to the Clinton Foundation, then the Clintons approve massive arms deals with those nations and contractors and promote those countries to up their counter terrorism efforts. Everyone wins!! Well, except all the poor people that get killed and maimed with the glut of weapons. Fuck.
Hamilton says: New Horse Grinder album out today! Dr. Nash Turley on his fiercest detuned guitar and political mutterings and me on the classic three-piece Horse Grinder drum kit. Plutocracy EP Part 2 is about money running the government and is exceedingly relevant. Recorded by renaissance man Tom Meyers and mastered by Ed Brooks at the freshly inaugurated Resonant Mastering. Listen to it! It’s 12 tracks and 20 minutes in traditional Horse Grinder style. There is beauty; there is carnage. ❤️
Nash says: The new Horse Grinder album is now out! It’s probably the best thing I’ve had a part in making and I’m very glad Hamilton Boyce and I got to work together on this, thanks Hamilton! I’m proud of the music and the messages and emotions within these songs. We cover a lot of topics including a song about my aunt learning that her son died in the war, our frustrations with gun violence and corruption, and my experiences when Occupy Toronto was broken up by the police. When I recorded the vocals for that I broke down in tears and every time I listen I get chills. For that song I was channeling all the people who’ve fought for the right thing in the world only to be repressed, often violently, by a powerful force that profits from their misery. Overall these are statements about how money in politics, and the subsequent erosion of democracy and empathy, causes suffering for all but a very few wealthy and powerful people. But there is a bit of hope at the end of the album inspired by the growing progressive movements in this country. I hope you take a listen and share it.
New clip for Gun Violence and Mourning, topics that are, sadly, always very relevant.
This song is from Plutocracy EP Part 2, to be released soon.
Dedicated to the victims of the hate crime against the LGBT community in Orlando and the approximately 100 people a day who are killed by firearms in America every day. We hope this inspires people to take political action on gun control, patriarchy, and toxic masculinity. People are dying because the government refuses to address these issues. Force those hateful and corrupt assholes to do something!
Some quotes from Green Party Presidential candidate Jill Stein on the current political landscape in a recent DemocracyNow! interview:
“Because at the end of the day, they [the democratic and republican parties] are not on your side. They need you to be afraid of them, because they are not for you”
“Trump says very scary things—deporting immigrants, massive militarism and, you know, ignoring the climate. Well, Hillary, unfortunately, has a track record for doing all of those things.”
“don’t be a victim of this propaganda campaign, which is being waged by people who exercise selective amnesia. They’re very quick to tell you about the terrible things that the Republicans did, but they’re very quick to forget the equally terrible things that have happened under a Democratic White House, with two Democratic houses of Congress. It’s time to forget the lesser evil, stand up and fight for the greater good.”
“in the words of Frederick Douglass, “Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never has, and it never will.” This is why third parties are effective, whether they’re in power or whether they are simply pushing. Otherwise, there is no counterweight of the power of corporations, which have basically taken over the two major corporate political parties.”
Elizabeth Warren explains how Hillary Clinton came to oppose legislation when she learned about the details, then she switched to supporting it once she started getting money from the corporations who benefit from that legislation, watch:
Amy Goodman is a fucking incredible journalist. “But we [the media] are not supposed to be simply stenographers to power. We are there to ask serious questions and to follow the money.” she says after her thwarted attempts to question David Koch about the influence of money in politics, watch:
Here I am very excited to stand next to Amy Goodman after she spoke in Flint, MI last year.
If you don’t know about Amy Goodman check out this speech where she shows the power and necessity of an independent and adversarial media:
If you are not a regular watcher/listener of Amy Goodman’s show Democracy Now! you are making a terrible mistake.
Maybe you saw in the last democratic debate where Bernie called out Hillary for being friends with, and taking advice from, Henry Kissinger. And for good reason because he is a fucking monster. Greg Grandin provides a list of his atrocities in his new book:
He (1) prolonged the Vietnam War for five pointless years; (2) illegally bombed Cambodia and Laos; (3) goaded Nixon to wiretap staffers and journalists; (4) bore responsibility for three genocides in Cambodia, East Timor, and Bangladesh; (5) urged Nixon to go after Daniel Ellsberg for having released the Pentagon Papers, which set off a chain of events that brought down the Nixon White House; (6) pumped up Pakistan’s ISI, and encouraged it to use political Islam to destabilize Afghanistan; (7) began the U.S.’s arms-for-petrodollars dependency with Saudi Arabia and pre-revolutionary Iran; (8) accelerated needless civil wars in southern Africa that, in the name of supporting white supremacy, left millions dead; (9) supported coups and death squads throughout Latin America; and (10) ingratiated himself with the first-generation neocons, such as Dick Cheney and Paul Wolfowitz, who would take American militarism to its next calamitous level.
In a review that Hillary Clinton wrote about Kissinger’s most recent book she states that she shares the “belief in the indispensability of continued American leadership in service of a just and liberal order”. So we can expect that Clinton will follow in Kissinger’s ideology of brutal and jingoistic interventionism around the world. And it makes you wonder, who will Clinton surround herself with to guide her foreign policy? As an article by Dan Froomkin in The Intercept points out, there is a go-to collective of interventionist neocons that Clinton and the Republicans are buds with. This supports the idea that there is an unelected and unaccountable group of political insiders that drive US foreign policy, and that is bullshit. Maybe someone like Sanders will be able to break away from their influence, but who knows…
Definitely read that Intercept article if this scares you.
You’ve probably heard about the crisis in Flint where a city of 100,000 people was poisoned by their government. Governor Snyder of Michigan switched their water supply to the corrosive Flint River and ended anti-corrosion treatment to the water. The corrosive water leached lead from the pipes into the water, which is now permanently locked in the blood of Flint’s residents, causing permanent neurological damage. On top of that, 10 people died of legionnaires disease with >80 hospitalized, a bacterial disease that had only a handful of cases in the years before the water switch. Now we’ve learned that the Governor’s office knew about the poisoned water over a year ago and despite many warnings, did nothing about it.
So why did this happen? The argument is that the water supply was switched to save the state some money, about $1-2 million. But during that same period the Governor pushed through legislation that cut taxes for corporations reducing tax revenue by $1.8 billion a year, yes BILLION. This lost tax income has to come from somewhere. As the government flows billions a year into the corporations and wealthy elite that funded Snyder’s campaign the rest of the population faces crippling austerity. So like so many other issues, the poisoning of 100,000 people in one of the countries poorest cities comes back to money in politics. As long as we continue to have a fucking plutocracy, where the government does everything in their power to help their rich backers and fuck everyone else, nothing will change. And all the benefits of government, the welfare, the money, the protection, will all go to the tiny sliver of the population who are already filthy fucking rich. It’s past time to do something about money in politics, lets get that fucking constitutional amendment. If you are not convinced watch this reporting on the story:
A new report shows that 62 most wealthy people now have more wealth than the 3.6 billion poorest people in the world, half the world’s population. Much of this inequality is attributed to tax avoidance and corporate deregulation. Hear more about the causes and consequences of this massive inequality, and what can be done to reverse this troubling trend, in the Democracy Now stories below:
The Koch Brothers have built a “comprehensive political machine manufacturing political change in the country”, they spend as much money on politics as the Republican party and they promote radical right-wing ideology. They fund political candidates that hold their views, they fund think tanks that write bogus “scientific” papers trying to debunk climate change, they battle environmental and corporate regulations, their corporation is the top producer of toxic waste in the US, just to name the actions of just a few of their slimy tentacles.
Check out this three part interview with the author of a new book about their empire:
And if you want to learn more check out this documentary about their various modes of evil:
If you want to know something about a political candidate look at their top donors and how much they give. The differences between Hillary and Bernie’s donors speak for themselves.
Bernie’s top donor over his career is Machinists/Aerospace Workers Union with $105K and the rest of the list is filled with other unions and no corporations.
Hillary’s top donor over her career is Citigroup Inc with $824K in donations and the rest of the list is mostly populated by other financial institutions (also look at how much she made from speaking fees from banks), media conglomerates, and law firms along with some other stuff like a pro-choice group and University of California.
So when Hillary says she’ll be tough on the banks:
Katrine Vanded Heuvel, editor of The Nation magazine, explains why they have endorsed Bernie Sanders:
“…Bernie Sanders who is the real deal, who is honest, who has integrity and is a truth teller about the rigged system that is shafting so many people in this country, the inequality that is leading this country to be a plutocracy, not a democracy. …in Bernie Sanders, there’s a political revolution that could upend the distorted priorities of this country, the sweetheart deals too many are getting, the grip of banks and insurance companies and pharmaceutical companies on this country, and speak to a better future.”
Why does congress not believe the scientific community when it comes to climate change? “It has everything to do with our corrupt campaign finance laws which allow large corporations and billionaires to contribute as money as they want into the political process” says Bernie Sanders. From this speech.
The virus of US military presence has spread to at least 60 locations around Africa, which include bases with troops and planes, many are launching sites for drones or special forces, and other are ports and strategic locations able to be utilized when needed. Almost all of this in complete secrecy as the military used to only admit to 1 base but now reluctantly admits 11 locations. In reality, the military has activities in 90% of African nations and conducted 674 missions in Africa last year. This is part of a larger expansion of military activity around the globe with special forces this year present in 147 countries and on any given day are on the ground in 70-90 countries. Proxy wars and secret assassination programs follow where US military set up shop.
The tactics of dirty warfare which have been experimented with in the Middle East and beyond for the last decade are spreading, and we can expect that with it will come mass violence and radicalization of the people who are subject to our assassinations and proxy wars.
Check out to the extended interview (in three parts) with Nick Turse where he discusses these disturbing revelations:
I am now making vlog-style videos on youtube as a new way to spread our social and political messages. Check out my first video below that discusses the implications of a quote from an influential foreign policy planner post-WWII.
Here is the full quote by George Kennan I read in the video:
“Furthermore, we have about 50% of the world’s wealth but only 6.3 of its population…In this situation, we cannot fail to be the object of envy and resentment. Our real task in the coming period is to devise a pattern of relationships, which will permit us to maintain this position of disparity… To do so we will have to dispense with all sentimentality and daydreaming; and our attention will have to be concentrated everywhere on our immediate national objectives…We should cease to talk about vague…unreal objectives such as human rights, the raising of the living standards, and democratization. The day is not far off when we are going to have to deal in straight power concepts. The less we are hampered by idealistic slogans, the better.”
Please leave any comments here or on youtube if you have any thoughts.
A recent study found that the opinion of the general population (lowest 90% on an economic scale) has no influence on policy decisions. However, the opinion of the richest 10% was strongly positively correlated with policy. In other words, very rich people get what they want and the rest have no influence. So the question is, why? Well, it’s the ol’ money in politics story with lobbyist and PACs buying election etc etc. It’s all well explained in this video:
The Wolf PAC plan is to pass a constitutional amendment that repeals Citizen’s United supreme court decision and limit individual campaign contributions. This will be done by passing legislation in 34 states (it has passed in 4 already) which calls for a convention of the States which drafts the amendment, completely bypassing congress. That amendment must then be ratified by 38 states to become law.
The Move to Amend plan also seeks a constitutional amendment by having it introduced in congress which then has to be ratified by a 3/4 vote.
The exciting thing about taking action on this issue is that >90% of voters support of some form of campaign finance reform. There are basically no issues with that much broad support; we will be successful and we will take back our democracy! If you want to take action I suggesting clicking through the links above and researching which you think is best. For the record, I volunteer with Wolf PAC.