Silly RT journalist Dan Glazebrook claims that ‘‘NATO drills – US attempt to show readiness for war against Russia’. He writes:
“Norway is hosting Europe’s biggest annual military exercise codenamed ‘Cold Response’. Some 15,000 troops from NATO states will be involved.
The scenario will mimic a military conflict with armed forces in a fictional cold country. Meanwhile, Norway’s current non-fictional security review lists Russia as one of the main threats. NATO officials, however, claim there’s no connection”.
Myownself, I’ve always taken NATO Commander Philip Breedlove’s word as gospel, haven’t you? SACEUR, SACEUR, genuflect, genuflect, genuflect… And he says: “Nah; we just wanna boost leadership development in Norway”. Look at that photo as he explains his mission; dude looks earnest as hell, amirite? And look at those grateful sergeants!
Well, okay back to Glazebrook, he admits that the drills are part strategic, but part well…a demonstration to Russia about NATO’s Exceptional Power (let’s face it: penis measuring, as per the news from some debate going on or other).
Sure, he points out a few facts that have made him paranoid about all this:
“There are strategic elements. There is going to be strategic resource wars in the Arctic and they are preparing for that… Remember the US strategy of full-spectrum dominance announced after the end of the Cold war: the idea that there should be no inch of the planet really that is beyond US military control…But I still think first and foremost they need to convince the world, demonstrate to the world that they are willing to go to war with Russia. Because it may be a bluff, but they need to convince the world that this is not a bluff and that they are able to do that. And for sure there are elements in the US military establishment [who] would be willing to do that, and that is not a bluff. So, it is a very dangerous situation that we are seeing develop here.”
Mind you, he does point out the proxy wars against The Bear in Ukraine (minimal) and Syria, where their help was actually sought (gasp). Then he drags in some of the oldest chestnuts in the book:
“It’s an observable, empirical fact that NATO is surrounding and encircling Russia with troops, threatening Russia with this kind of exercises. We also know from past experience that NATO countries’ leaders are not to be believed when they reassure Russia. For example, when George Bush Sr said that NATO won’t advance one inch to the East, and every country that has joined the EU to the East had subsequently gone on to join NATO. NATO assurances are not worth the paper they are written on. It doesn’t matter what NATO is saying, it is what they are doing that gives their game away.”
Ach, you sly readers, you’re probably remembering that old Putin-lover Stephen F. Cohen’s alarmism from Feb. 9, aren’t you? ‘The Obama Administration Recklessly Escalates Confrontation With Russia By quadrupling military spending on NATO’s forces on Russia’s border, Washington risks turning the new Cold War into a hot one’ ? Yeah, well the F probably stands for ‘Flip City Freakout’ yes?
“The move is unprecedented in modern times. With the exception of Nazi Germany’s invasion of the Soviet Union, Western military power has never been positioned so close to Russia. The Obama administration’s decision is Russian roulette Washington-style, making the new Cold War even more dangerous than the preceding one. Russia will certainly react, probably by moving more of its own heavy weapons, including advanced missiles, to its Western borders, possibly along with a number of tactical nuclear weapons. Indeed, a new and more dangerous US-Russian nuclear arms race has been under way for several years, which the Obama administration’s latest decision can only intensify.”
Oh, wait; he’s indeed right about that… is it about weapons escalation to bankrupt the former USSR?
And yeppers, Glazebrook is correct about the resource wealth in the Arctic Circle, and we all remember SoS Clinton’s rush to Scandinavia to “…assert U.S. claim in scramble for Arctic” (Reuters), and weren’t there some stories about USians planting flags on the ocean floor as ‘claims’ and whatnot?
The silly RT video in Dan’s news piece joshed around about the agitprop target being instead: Iceland or Greenland. Ha, ha. Me, I’m convinced that it’s Santa’s Workshop, myself.
Hell’s bells; let’s go see what NATO on the Twit Machine has to say, okay?
(hay-ull, I couldn’t even understand the dude…)
(see, it’s just Olympic biathlon practice!)
“The B-52s will conduct multiple sorties over the course of the exercise, engaging in simulated strikes against ground targets inside the training area. As the U.S. Air Force’s premier nuclear-capable, strategic heavy bomber, the B-52 is capable of delivering a large payload of precision nuclear or conventional ordnance over long distances while also providing decision makers the ability to rapidly project military power.
“Bomber participation in joint military exercises like this one are an expression of the U.S. commitment to supporting our allies and partners, demonstrating our shared dedication to promoting global security and stability,” said Maj. Matt Spinelli, 2nd EBG assistant director of operations.
The B-52s will join with KC-135 Stratotankers and F-16 Fighting Falcons to serve as the American air component for the duration of Cold Response 16. A number of C-130 Hercules will also be on hand to provide support to ground forces.”
Sure, you can make a big deal about those Boeing (boing, boing, gone, ‘Whoopee they’re all gonna die!) Stratofortess B-52s and their 70,000 pounds of weapons payload capabilities, but remember: it’s all a feint, and besides, ours is an All-Volunteer Military now, even though some cynics claim it’s a de facto jobs program. Ha, a brilliant move ending the draft was, including precluding a bunch of Commie war-cowards from staging protests across the land. Ha: ‘What happened to the peace movement’ some ask.
Shoot, Stephen Lendeman claims that General Breedlove’s deranged:
“Breedlove is a real-life general Jack D. Ripper – Stanley Kubrick’s deranged character from his dark satire, titled “Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb.” The film ends ominously with nuclear detonations. If Breedlove gets his way, life-on-earth-ending nuclear war with Russia could happen. He’s a menacingly anti-Russian psychopath with his finger on the nuclear trigger in Europe, maybe itching to squeeze it. He rails about nonexistent Russian aggression, urges greater militarization of Europe to confront what he calls “an adversary…pos(ing) a longterm existential threat to the United States.” He claims Moscow “weaponized” the refugee crisis, its aerial campaign in Syria a plot to flood Europe with hoards of fleeing people. On March 6, the Military Times said “(t)he Pentagon is discussing plans to permanently move one or more Army brigade combat teams back to Europe, where the top American commander has signaled an urgent need to shore up allied defenses against the Russians.” He wants thousands more US combat troops deployed near Russia’s borders. “We do not have…enough US forces permanently stationed forward…so I believe that the permanent forces forward need to be reviewed,” he ranted.”
There’s plenty more, but well, you get his drift, right? Paranoid polemics, Inc.
And anyhoo, CENTCOM Generals explained some facts to the Senate Armed Services Committee yesterday, and it may have boiled down to ‘Iran bad, Saudi Arabia good, Libya a failed state, ISIL existential threat, yada yada’ (RT), but they have their hands full, I tell ya! Oh, well, kill zem all now, sort it out later…just keep the military budget satisfied.
Oh, and don’t forget threatening China over free shipping lanes. And from what I read, things are going swimmingly in Afghanistan (2045! can’t wait for our peace dividends!), but when they’re not, the UK troop and police trainers are to blame. Got it? (not ANASOC, ANASOC, genuflect, genuflect…)
So much March of Folly here in Mme. Nuland’s European and Eurasian theater of operations and politics. The nostalgia for when the US seemed “Yuge” is growing and the only way it seems to fake it is to restart the Cold War with Russia (Halford Mackinder and his geopolitics of a hundred years ago and all that). We have always been at war with Eurasia, eh George.
Scramble for resources in the Arctic just as soon as the ice melts and there is a real Northwest Passage. In spite of the very solidly created Arctic Council, which from 2015 to 2017 is chaired by the the US, specifically, by this Chairmanship team:
Will be interesting when the memos are declassified to find out who has been pushing the foreign policy envelope in the Obama administration. If we have the good fortune and accountability to ever see them declassified.
Russia is important in this only as a foil because China does not have the capabilities to be sold as threatening. Remember what has driven US policymakers nuts. Mikhail Gorbachev succeeded in taking away their most significant enemy. A US without enemies turns on itself internally it seems.
I chuckled at the rolling out of the now 60-year-old B-52s as the key weapons system in this exercise, despite trillions of dollars in procurement of supposed successors.
Resources in this case equal oil, the resource needed for the military ouroboros to continue eating its tail. Do we see conflict over sidedrilling under Siberia now that the Shell lease tract seems to have turned up empty? Gah.
the rhetoric’s gettin’ pretty wild out there, isn’t it? but dang, i’d have sworn they used to let nulandakagan tweet, but all there is now is the eur-press office. hardly any fun a-tall, and all re-tweets.
yeah, i never seem to absorb your mackinder geopolitics, likely because i don’t *see* map pictures in my mind.
i guess that arctic-council group is what came after SoS clinton’s having staked her claim, then followed up by ‘we need an international organization’? the council’s aims seem to be so benign, but i’m guessing that’s by way of smokescreen?
well, oil and gas, but some say some rare earth minerals, as well, so i dunno. china isn’t giving the empire enough to work with, save for finance, yes? but mr. wd steered me to a newish escobar that apparently posits: fear of brics, leading to going after the weak link, brazil, first. it makes more sense of the major attempts to take down lula…and maybe dilma.
yeah, but that stratofortress is YUGE! think of the shadow it casts on the ground!
what’s with nato taking ships into the aegaen to ‘help’ the refugee crisis? are they really blocking entries as some say? i’ve thoroughly lost touch with the whole tragedy.
Hey rube! Uncle Joe asks how many divisions we have (15K is one and a half). Sounds FAILSAFE; but the triptych … tych … tych of that tableau, together with ON THE BEACH and DR. BREEDLOVE should be required viewing by ALL ‘Murkans; because the current stake are Actually EXISTENTIAL for the Russians (Chinese and Indians)! It is THEIR CONTINENT, After all. For Amerigeddon’s sake, though; the final word for US DFH remains that of fellow eternal flamer, Barry McGuire:
lol. might be their continent, but the western hegemon doesn’t mind er…’managing’ it as it can. dark little planet, as mr. wd is wont to say…
i do like that song of barry’s; thanks. i sometimes think of sting’s song, and wonder if he’s changed his mind on the framing by now, yanno? or have i misread him?
on edit: which triptych, please?
Ah, it seems i’ve failed in my quest to make you laugh. ;-) feelin’ rode hard ‘n put up wet after a long day. tomorrow…
good night, and sweet dreams if you can find them. (try to guess the musicians: star-studded, whoa, nellie!)
(THD-nice catch on the 60 yr old B-52. where has the time gone?) i get a certain org’s “peace fellowship” updates and they are freaking out over some uncivil language from der drumpfenfuhrer wanna be, the real estate speculator who’s gonna make america great again (don’t HRC & the Bern also want to make america great again?). not a peep about the 150 plus dead in Somalia. or any of this stuff.
merkwerdigliebe-strangelove. google translate gives bruetenliebe as one option for breedlove.
Here’s the background of the Arctic Council. Finland got the organization going:
In January 1989, Finland sent a letter to the other Arctic states proposing a conference on protection of the Arctic environment. The Rovaniemi Meeting of September 1989 established two working groups. This was followed by the second consultative meeting in Yellowknife, Canada in April 1990 where a third ad hoc group was established to develop the strategy. It also resulted in the preparation of a draft document. Kiruna, Sweden was the site of the third meeting, held in January 1991, where one group worked on the drafting the AEPS while another dealt with specific environmental issues.
And as usual, mission creep takes over:
The 1996 Ottawa Declaration established the Arctic Council as forum for promoting cooperation, coordination, and interaction among the Arctic States, with the involvement of the Arctic Indigenous communities and other Arctic inhabitants on issues such as sustainable development and environmental protection. The Arctic Council has conducted studies on climate change, oil and gas, and Arctic shipping.
In 2011, the Council member states concluded the Arctic Search and Rescue Agreement, the first binding treaty concluded under the Council’s auspices.
So in 2016, part of the membership is being propositioned into taking defensive military posture against one of the other members. Can’t have regional nations themselves sorting out issues politcally. Must have ganging up by non-regional allies of regional allies. Classic imperial control move.
Aegean maneuvers by NATO? Trying to shut off refugee flow? As for closing Bosporus, we already know that someone in DoD or State is stupid enough to think they can evict Russia from Sebastapol and sent US Navy ships to threaten it from within the Black Sea. Fortunately so far Putin understands when he’s being baited to justify retaliation.
thank for the history, but it was already in palce pre-clinton posturing? okay. but i love ‘mission creep’…er…should i need to ask which nation is on the receiving end of dfensive miltary posturing?
well, as for NATO’s mission in the aegean, i’ll leave it to you to parse their fine words. hard not to be a cynic, as i’ve sure seen headlines…otherwise. phooey, where were nato’s mine-sweepers? wish i had some vestige of a memory. ah, it’s on their twit thingie…
yeah, putin doesn’t take the bait often; do they like that…or not?
Putin not taking the bait, pushing the peace card, and bailing them out when they screw up (Syria chemical weapons) is driving the hardliners nuts in the same way that Obama’s bipartisanship drove the Republican party over the edge to Trumpism. Needless to say, in both cases it is very dangerous.
Whoever is benefitted by NATO’s posture towards Russia, it is a country not a member of the Arctic Council and with axes to grind against Russia. My first suspicions are the Baltic countries, Poland, and possibly Sweden, which doesn’t actually border on the Arctic Ocean but has “Arctic interests” and is a major builder of icebreakers. Here’s their public strategy.
It really is an unnecessary tension and promise of conflict. But given the US thirty-seven year policy of accelerating climate change, any conflict creates demand for fossil fuels, which ….and around we go.
“Climate change is creating new challenges, but also new opportunities.” ha ha ha.
sensitive to the sami, well, good on them, if so.
but yes, it all reminds one of kids back in the day rolling barrel hoops with sticks, doesn’t it?
but srly, the way i remember it all to begin with was that clinton was trying to (ahem) let russia know in no uncertain terms: we will rule the arctic shelf and exposed land masses!” you don’t remember the flags underwater? please say i ain’t makin’ it up. ;-)
on edit: ooof! pardon my bias; it was russians plantin’ flags.
NATO: soon to be proudly staffing your school’s crossing guards.
the guys at the debate last night…Kasich became unhinged w/all the ass-kicking he’s going to do around the world. I couldn’t take more than about 5 minutes of it.
but in the pas de dunce the donks & the pachys do, what have HRC & the Bern to say about this crap in Norway? or the God-Emperor egging on the NATO allies to get more bombey w/Libya? or the China seas? or escalation in Syria? or what Turkey’s doing to the Kurds? (or Israel & Turkey providing oil revenues to ISIS? or…or..or..there are things they will say of course: strutting & cackling about what they will do to Iran & N. Korea…cocks of the walk who are really cocks of nothing.)
even the crickets are in hushed awe (or boredom) about the nothingness of this idiotic election.
no, amigo, i must object to the organization’s likely staffing of school crossing-guards. those have to be sweet grandmothers who smile and entice the lil chirren to enter the halls of mis-education. now school ‘resource officers’ i can see, but that depends on the school locations, yes?
norway? i can’t answer your questions about what the dem candidates have said except for one, but more on that later. but oh me, oh my, is libya in the news! i haven’t ever known obama to unspool in this fashion (is he the god-emperor you mentioned?) the diplomatic phones are ringin’ off the hooks, esp. as nato and the state dept. were going to great lengths to tout the us/uk long-time love-fest….since churchill. and yeah, it’s for real…and is everywhere. such a tantrum, a window into his…his…deflection ability? he skips way past what the UN mandate actually was (UN res.1970, though i can’t speak to the accuracy of the wiki), and how far past it the ‘allies’ went, too.
‘S**t show’: Obama blames UK & other European states for post-Gaddafi Libya ‘mess’
his only mistake lay in the fact that he trusted france and the uk…mr. accountability…
‘Prosecutors brand Madeleine Albright’s NGO as undesirable in Russia’
i loved this because i didn’t know that she started that particular ngo, but yes, the same folks just hide under new ‘democracy project’ groups when one gets too hot…or too cold…or tossed out, like many did in ‘our backyard’.
Warning: one does get forced into seeing miz “it was worth it”‘s photo.
meanwhile, ‘sanctions or..bombing, boots on the ground, weapons’:
”Italy, France and the UK have been pressing since autumn 2014 for an internationally recognised government to be formed in Libya which would then invite western forces into the country to train the Libyan military to defeat Isis, guide aerial attacks and protect oil installations.
It has been repeatedly reported that special forces from Italy, France, the US and the UK are already in the country ahead of an Italian-led operation.”
i KNEW if i were ‘diligent’ enough…i could find the cupcake proof of the uk/us #special relationship again (mr. wd’s been killin’ himself laughin’ at my (ahem) overly-zealous, time-consuming search. ;-)
Hey, that is special. Just the opposite of how it started out. Who is the “-er” and who is the “-ee” in this relationship. Or is it yet another ouroboros?
i swear i’d had to look up ‘ourobouros’ when you’d used it earlier; it’s purrrfect. but dang; see: i blew it! US always comes before UK, get it right, woman! but uh-huh…the white house is tryin’ to explain things now…guess it’s good the french are more sanguine since sarkozy’s somewhere else.
i ♥ the dickens outta all of it, and love the many op-eds at the guardian (just the titles are enough….)
now as for turkey providing oil revenues for isil, i remember the state dept. tweeting a ‘tsk, tsk’.
as for the bern and clinton, as you might read the transcript, please remember that amy goodman had on a ‘journalist’ from the paper of record speaking about his new grand exposé ‘The Libya Gamble: Inside Hillary Clinton’s Push for War & the Making of a Failed State’
to say it’s full of bias and disinformation, apologetics, from both the interviewer and nyt ‘journalist’ would be true. well, not quite; goodman provided a bit of pushback because she’s felt the bern, imo.
but here’s both dems on the clusterfuck that is libya at the debate in NH:
clinton, yada, yada misrembering, then:
I think that what Libya then did by having a full free election, which elected moderates, was an indication of their crying need and desire to get on the right path. Now, the whole region has been rendered unstable, in part because of the aftermath of the Arab Spring, in part because of the very effective outreach and propagandizing that ISIS and other terrorist groups do.
MARTHA RADDATZ: Senator Sanders?
SEN. BERNIE SANDERS: The truth is, it is relatively easy for a powerful nation like America to overthrow a dictator, but it is very hard to predict the unintended consequences and the turmoil and the instability that follows after you overthrow that dictator. So, I think Secretary Clinton and I have a fundamental disagreement: I’m not quite the fan of regime change that I believe she is.” (you tell ’em, bernie!)
S. Shane explain why there was no 72-hr ceasefire for gadaffi to get out, and past that…is all too ludicrous. but defending clinton’s “we came, we saw…he died” is jaw-dropping.
Voted. Hope to kick the Bernie can down the road a few more states until Ms. Inevitability proves her primary inevitability. A process vote more than a principle vote (are there any of those at the national level anymore?) Real policy votes were for county commission; voting out some preachers who have been getting extra large offerings from developers seeking to do in environmental standards on their high-density McMansion developments. Or at least that’s my hope. It is amazing how transparent the corruption has become even at the local level.
most votes at the national level have been lote votes for quite some time, but i’m not a dem, either. but i reckon i’ll not even vote for prez in the general…as my own silly protest.
wow, even the preachers?/s
i’ve been reading some essays at roar and other sites about how to stir up anticapitalism, most of the references you already know: jerome roos, paraphrasing bookchin and interviewing harvey, but most are not even close to be being written in the Common Tongue. but as to ‘the bern revolution cult’, this young pup has it as close to right as anyone i’ve read. ben reynolds.
but yes, the seeds of anticapitalism have been sown, and a number of the essayists posit that some movemental politics are bypassing the old socialist memes and poetry, and that the left’s only hope will be to re-invent itself; hard because: imagining comes first.
p.s. on edit: we don’t call that freak of nature by name around here. ;-)
p.p.s.on edit: guess ‘freak of nature’ only narrowed it don to two. ‘what a dump’, i’d meant.
A reasonable critique of treating Sanders as a panacea. We know full well where strategy-less hope leads to.
Which is it? Working-class self organization or “we” (whoever “we” is) organizing in working-class neighborhoods? Too often “working-class” for the left is white male working-class. Well, that great white hope has been self-organizing for at least forty years, and the result of that self-organization was the standoff at the Malheur Wildlife Refuge. An interesting attempt to seize the means of production from the state. The US powers that be have focused for now approaching a hundred years (if not before) on ensuring that the left wing is never considered a real possibility for politics. Suppression or co-option or allowing fascist violence: the old division on the frontier persists. Any self-organization better be self-conscious of that propensity if it is to survive. The primary purpose of the Republican modern conservative party has been to ensure the the white working class is aligned with the powers that be. Meanwhile, the working class has grown to be much larger than just white. As Sanders points out many black and Hispanic issues are fundamentally class issues with race and ethnicity just being markers for the subservient class. That failure of identity politics has sent political support of working-class ethnic minorities to Hillary Clinton instead of to some self-organized political revolution.
Sanders is a democratic socialist in a sense close to that in which Michael Harrington was a democratic socialist at a point in time in which being a democratic socialist was only emerging from being vocational suicide. The scars of the amputation of the left wing during the period from 1946 to the rise of the modern conservative movement still hamper effective thinking about political strategy on the US left. And it is not a trivial problem to sort out. Failing to deal with that allows for easy thinking and ineffective action. And the recurrent seduction that electoral politics alone can bypass some hard struggle and engagement.
My one vote is not likely to change the primary result unless there is a trend already moving towards a Sanders election. At best, even with election of majorities in the House (unlikely) and Senate (possible). it will take more to have the promised Bernie popular revolution. And the vision of how that unfolds is less visible than the where those legislative majorities come from. But that is much easier to envision than how worker self-organization translates into a political revolution that invents its own structures of governance and social organization.
Did I mention again that I am pessimistic about the processes unfolding in this election moving in other than a disruptive way and even repressive way. Worker self-organization looks very much like a self-conscious working class as workers dictating their own officials and political processes and priorities. But that might happen. There is much conflict and struggle yet to occur; we are still four months away from the party conventions, at which the the threat is that either or both parties will fall apart. And no one knows how the movement fragments will align themselves and move to open up US politics.
This year is likely to get more interesting before the political powers that be sort out the general election.
Reynolds didn’t offer a complete vision, but he did specify ‘internationalist’, as many black and brown global organizations do, so…white male would be a low percentage, yes? and alliances would mean some sort of consensual needs/goals/aims/process. but i do believe that in online ‘leftist’ sites, far too often it’s very comfortable white males who offer the most intellectual prescriptions, and forget the precarity and increasing immiseration of: people of color, and especially the indigenous, and speak mainly of the zeigeist in the US at whatever time.
i wouldn’t classify the bundys of this country as ‘working class’ at all. perhaps welfare libertarians who believe they are family entrepeneurs of some sort, quite different from wage slaves. i do tend to breeze by ‘the means of production’, yada, yada. but there are indeed communities trying to organize horizontally, perhaps in the way of the zapatista caracoles, with public banking, attempts at worker-owned businesses, but they do seem to be few and far between. but with some large push on the horizon, more similar ‘self-organization’ may emerge, especially if there’s inter-communication among questing groups. isn’t that what the glory of the internet was supposed to be partially about?
yes, of course it’s a class issue, but i don’t agree that skin color is just a marker of the subservient class; it’s far stronger than that. yes, it’s crazy that so many blacks (maybe not hispanics) are still in thrall to any clinton, given their misrule in both political life and capitalist ‘philanthropic’ endeavors.
but okay, if you see it more likely that good change will come from within congress, i honor that, but will disagree, even while not really being able to see what that future might hold. and yes, things seem likely to break apart further with the presidential electoral process, and again, yes: beware demagogues of any stripe, and/or martial law.
either of us might be over-thinking or under-thinking any or all of this, but that may just be who we are. ;-)
p.s. reynolds’ ‘building power’ link went to this page; i’m trying to make my way through the easier reads of the essays.
OT: Movemental politics just intersected electoral politics in Chicago. A substantial protest just shut down Trump’s rally. Watch Trump start complaining about civility.
The echoes of #nonato and #blacklivesmatter are intruding into Tuesday’s primary election. If Anita Alvarez gets defeated, it will be significant because of her challenger. Even if her challenger gets defeated by a Republican, some of the Emanuel corruption in Chicago will be taken to court, weakening the remainder of the Daley machine. At the same time, the movemental politics is growing, not diminishing.
Trump, the bully, cut and run when pressed. Look for him to ask for state protection of his rallies. The vehicles on the old duopoly railroad are creaking and shaking, but will they jump the rails? Moving toward shades of 1968.
To your comment above that was being squeeze narrower with each reply:
“Internationalist” is the counterpart of “globalism”. The David Harvey piece in building power issue goes exactly to this point of the symbiotic relationship between capitalist institutions and leftist responses. Global capitalism is a pattern of institutions; internationalist workers organization used to be the symbiotic institution that emerged out of global industrial capitalism an manifest itself in labor unions in already developed countries. Harvey’s point is that global capitalism is something else today and international workers have no symbiotic institution. His further point is that maybe having a symbiotic reaction is not the best strategy. Where he goes geographical, getting into neigborhoods and other different ways that production and realization of value are organized geographically needs some thought; I think Harvey is onto to something that the Zapatistas tapped here but can’t be copied in other situation but must be thought through out of local knowledge. Thanks for triggering my trip to the issue and Harvey’s interview. That begins to put some details in play that one can envision how they could evolve locally.
Welfare libertarians styling as entrepreneurs. Yes. Could be.
On means of production…David Harvey does this riff on infrastructure and the state and why having the power to do large things is important. If you are looking at internationalist/globalist issues, of course you need the power to do large things, a power that at the moment is being sucked of in militarism. You do need the functions of a CDC or WHO to coordinate global response to epidemic or pandemic. And expanding the network of collaborating partners is critical to getting that sort of global health function operating. But there are important local means of production involved here; that is what the US, UK, French, and Chinese wound up providing Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea in the ebola outbreak of 2014 – local temporary hospital, treatment center, and family housing facilities. They also provided the equipment for local dignified burial and decontamination teams. But those are essential required local means of production that should be available in every community. Cooperative infrastructure. Sort of what the task forces of Occupy were working to implement between general assemblies.
Yes, the race-class-indigenous detritus of slavery and the frontier are complicated and exert powerful unacknowledged influence on many things. The 1990s were the period in which the black working class and black middle class made the greatest gains and those who rode the escalator up remember it with the Clintons because the down esclator did not occur until the Bush administration — both the IT bust that affected a lot of young black technical working class and managerial folks. It is the folks how made it then even if they lost it later who are most aligned with the Clintons. And given the results in Michigan, this might only be an effect among blacks in the South. The misrule of the Clinton era was felt later and outside the Sunbelt cities of the South. There is also an age cohort effect in black support of Clintons. Younger blacks are less loyal. Sanders’s Michigan victory was built on young blacks in Detroit and other black majority cities along with other constituencies.
It is not that I think the good change can come out of Congress but that one must have sufficient power in Congress in order for it to act at all on an agenda. The McConnell era in the Senate is instructive about this. One also must ensure that Congress is not bound to the lobbying structures; the Baucus-Reid era shows the consequences of allowing lobbyists to write legislation. Fixating on the President as if they are a monarch is a big mistake in the US system of government.
Over-thinking is a hazard of age. Under-thinking is another hazard of age. Not being able to understand which it is that one is doing at the moment is a hazard of the human condition. But from small town cafes to the social media, the social networks that do politics depend on these sorts of conversations.
Interesting times, indeed.
i’m glad you chose the david harvey interview, thd; i could comprehend a good part of it. ;-) a couple essays i had to either look up so many terms or just back out due to massive incomprehension. a few i’ll read again, intuiting they contain some jewels worth absorbing.
loads of harvey’s assertions seemed very relevant, including his lament that most radical leftists ignored Capital, Volume II on the importance of the realization of value (although he never mentioned the cost of food, which is key in pre-insurrection, as i’ve read it, and i laughed when he mentioned capitalists ‘taking back what they’ve given away), and the fact that now service workers are the old ‘steel workers’, and few want to organize them.
it’s been unclear to me what relationship the SEIU has with the ‘fight for 15’ movement (printed signs and all), but that so many big unions have endorsed clinton-$10.10-is-okay speaks volumes, doesn’t it?
yes, the big dog’s policy freight bills didn’t come due for the poor and people of color until dubya, but the larger bill for all (his ‘banking modernization’) hit hard and has become harder.
as to ‘congress’ equating to ‘the state’, is that what harvey means inside this country? would he (and you) see bernie in the oval as ‘opening up space’ as he does for podemos *if they make a government* (last i read, they hadn’t)? stopping lobbyist-written legislation would seem key, especially in state govt., but how does that happen from inside? maybe i’m underthinking because i’m in too much of a hurry to see justice flow up like…er…well, around here the jest is that mormons can make water run uphill…;-)
the global infrastructure systems he mentions…i have to think about, especially as he mentions them as necessary in ameliorating climate change, yet breezes by ‘green capitalism and green consumerism’ after his brief discussion on consumerism. ah, well, it’s a short interview… but no one in paris talked about the crucial need for people living with a low-carbon footprint, just public/private partnerships of ‘clean energy’ solar, biomass, wind power, which of course…is another capitalist con.
ah, i need to start the day; more later as i can. thank you for the conversation, as ever.
nite. read a lot today, did a lot chores. dream of a better world, look at the night sky if it’s visible where you are. inspirational perspective, at least…most of the time. ;-)