They will be Directing the Global One Percent Choir in comfort and style, learning how to take care of themselves along the way. But seriously, satirizing the affair this year…ain’t quite so funny, given the massive immiseration of so many citizens globally. But in any event, ♪ On with the Bugs Bunny Sho-o-ow♫!
(‘This years’ meeting will urge CEOs to increase their companies’ contributions to society.’) Apparently, so that they can ‘consume more’; later on that…or do they really fear the global Rabble’s many Winters of Discontent? Nah. How many years has this been a huge thing on the WEF Global Risk Report? Weird disconnect on the signs, though.
Via Aljazeera: “Is this year’s meeting significant?
The WEF says this year’s summit is important because of the debates surrounding globalisation.
But critics expect more of the same, claiming the WEF is a “talking shop” incapable of delivering meaningful change.
“The main critique is that it is a manifest failure of imagination,” Max Lawson, Oxfam International’s head of inequality policy, told Al Jazeera.
WEF attendees “have had many years now of handwringing about the growing gap between rich and poor, and very little to show for it … This is clearly because business as usual is good business for those at the top.
“Ultimately it is public mobilisation and public anger that will lead to progressive change.”
Oh, my yes: Our Capitalist Overlords in Davos are high-fiving one another because global GDP increased by 3.5% in 2017, and look for 2018 to be Evan Bettah! (for them)
There’s a Reports tab and an Initiatives tab at the WEF2018 homepage. This year’s Global Risk Report; this year these are the Top Four: ‘environmental degradation, cybersecurity breaches, economic strains and geopolitical tensions. And in a new series called “Future Shocks” the report cautions against complacency and highlights the need to prepare for sudden and dramatic disruptions.’
On morning edit: Pepe Escobar notes today that inside the report was ‘in terms of impact, they are superseded by weapons of mass destruction – a direct consequence of the Korean peninsula standoff.
It was heart-warming to note that the conference was opened by none other than Hindu Nationalist Narenda Modi who’d decried creeping protectionism and as per AlJazeera:
“The focus of this year’s edition of the annual Davos meeting is on Creating a Shared Future in a Fractured World, according to the Geneva-based foundation’s website.
Modi praised India, home to some 1.2 billion people, for its commitment to democracy and diversity.
“For a society with diverse religions, cultures, languages, attires and cuisines, democracy is not just a political system but a way of living,” he said, adding that inclusion is the “main principle” of his government.
Modi’s record has come under scrutiny for his ruling Hindu-nationalist BJP’s treatment of India’s religious minorities.
India’s Muslim and the Christian communities accuse BJP supporters of targeting them since Modi led the party to victory in the 2014 parliamentary elections and formed the central government.”
Way-ull yay-uss, stir in his long record of that added to his constant failures to hold a previously guaranteed self-determination plebiscite in Kashmir and other ‘disputed territories’ is an evil one. But hey, the fact that he was once persona non grata in the US and Western Society changed once the sainted Tulsi Gabbard conducted him on two Charm Offensives across the US. Perhaps they may have mentioned to key players how valuable India could be to NATO bases as an actual member (not as with so many others: NATO partners, ‘under our umbrella’, etc., yanno, like Ukraine and Georgia, not to mention what a ‘consumer society’ those billion+ people could be. His constant Namaste utterances ring rather hollow, don’t they? Pffffft.
Mitigating disasters? Easy: public/private partnerships. The Privates make money while virtue-signaling their largesse by way of public contributions.
Now many panel discussions and reports, white papers, etc. concern The Fourth Industrial Revolution™ (IT of course) indicate that it’s the duty of the Masters of the Universe to make sure that the peons are educated in X, Y, or Z ways to not only survive the coming massive job losses to robots, but to jump right ahead to the alternative jobs market. Isn’t that kind of them to think of us first? They’ve also dubbed 2018 ‘the Asian Year’ in covert acknowledgment that Asian economies and ‘innovation’ just might be in the process of kicking their own asses to the curb.
And of course, most of the solutions to the emergencies (oopsie, I mean major ‘risks’) are solvable through increased technology: even removing the plastic from the polymer-choked oceans ahead of geo-farming it! Now I admit I was sorely disappointed to see charts about the carbon footprints by nation ranked, and a chart on the ‘causes’ of the carbon, not one of which icludedd military footprints which are yuuuuuge. But guess these Welfare Queens and Kings wouldn’t want to advertise that, now would they?
War & Peace? Ach, nah, not so much. Just this crap panel video here: ‘Achieving Sustainable Peace in a Fractured World’ Two dudes, one of whom was the Prez of Colombia, and the moderator couldn’t stop saying ‘ColUmbia’, pffft. And some other mumbled name dude… If there were others, I hadn’t spotted them.
On morning edit: ‘German Chancellor promotes militarism and great-power politics at World Economic Forum’, wsws.org
“At a luxury resort in the Swiss Alps, the acting Chancellor sought to drum up support for a European defence policy that would enable Germany and Europe to enforce their economic and geostrategic interests around the world.
“If Europe, with its 27 future members, is incapable of sending a united message to major countries like China, India, the United States or Russia, and foreign policy is instead made nationally, the attempt to become a global player will fail,” warned Merkel. “If we want to be taken seriously as Europeans, we have one further major task, specifically to cooperate in the area of foreign policy.”
Wonder what one of these adorable urban solutions to climate change costs?
On the ‘Initiatives’ page is ‘Shaping the Future of Financial and Monetary Systems’, and ‘Promoting Global Financial Inclusion’ cuz:
“Over two billion people worldwide are financially excluded and ~200-250 million SMEs are underserved because neither cash systems nor the traditional banking model effectively serve them. These individuals and businesses then rely on riskier and more expensive methods to save, borrow, and secure their assets.
All [of the weighty experts involved] share the goal of developing sustainable collaborative models to advance access to, and use of, financial services through digital means. Lessons learned from these work streams are shared through convenings and knowledge products, bringing local work to the larger global context.”
Whaaaat in the name of Sweett Fannie Adams does that mean? Thus Modi’s version of a cashless society? How’d that work out for the peons in India? Spoiler alert: not that well.
The list of Partners is on the right side-bar; almost all of them banks, save for the fauxlanthropic Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. ‘Get African farmers SmartPhones, an watch their productivity soar! (And a few GMO seeds, too.)
‘Sweden is moving quickly towards a cashless society. “We’re looking at potentially an e-Krona, far away into the future, we don’t know if we’ll use blockchain but it will work as a one-to-one exchange rate to the Krona, as a compliment to notes and coins,” says Skingsley, representing the Swedish central bank.’
While the Western nations must be only too aware of it, I didn’t see any discussion in that section about the coming demise of the petro-dollar, though.
Who among us wouldn’t be bullish on their Brave New World initiative ‘Shaping the Future of Consumption’, ROTFLMAO!
“In this context of seismic change, the World Economic Forum’s Future of Consumption System Initiative envisions a future where benefits of technological advancement are inclusive and firmly embedded in people’s lives, making daily consumption experiences simpler, accessible, highly personal and more enjoyable while also imbued with trust and in harmony with nature. It takes a holistic view of addressing the question, “How can technological disruption drive enhanced models of consumption with sustainable benefits for business and society”, across developed and emerging markets?”
How? WTF? Just put a sexy green-washing label on food ‘products’ while noting ‘Almost GMO-free!. While both hilarious and self-servingly classist, it’s at least semi-coherent, unlike s many of the White Papers and Brilliant Reports that are utter word salads swirling down the drain, and often contain the word ‘circularity’ a dozen times.
You’ll no doubt be tickled witless that The Conference has joined the #MeToo Movement, as had NATO earlier.
‘2018 will be a year for women to thrive. We’re at a turning point.’
“Beyond policies, much of today’s conversation is about the wider social change that is also needed. And from #equalpay to #metoo and beyond, it looks like it’s coming. Time is up for discrimination and abuse against women. The time has come for women to thrive.’
I always think of Managing Director of the IMF as promoting global women’s rights, don’t you?
And hell’s bells: the female vice-CEO of Microsoft just announced that they will no longer automatically send harassment cases into binding arbitration! Wooot!
‘Democracy in a Post-Truth Era’:
This session must have been a barn-burner, as the video of the contributors was quite long (most others were as well):
“The session began with a “fake news test” with Laeri asking each participant whether a news story was fake or real. The panel did well, but in a wider survey, respondents were only able to identify half of all stories as being real (rather than fake) news.
Laeri asked (Mike) Allen (CEO of Axios) if the fake news situation is getting better in the US? His short answer was “no”. He argued that the tech giants are more aware of the fake news, but it doesn’t mean there is less of it. He suggested that the popularity of fake news comes from the fact it hits an emotional chord, which real news often doesn’t.’
Google, Facebook and Twitter are rooting all that fake ‘roosian bots creating chaos!!!’ rot out, along with anti-war, anti-Imperialism essays, thank heavens… But shucks, how distressing that Our Overlords didn’t recognize that this film should have won the award for ‘best psyop #FakeNews of 2016, speaking of ‘hitting an emotional cord’.
(You rawk, Boots, you commie hip-hop rapper…)
Zo, Trump’s speech is over, all indications are that he’d tried to thread some needle between nationalist protectionism and globalization. ‘Amerika is open for bidness! Let’s make a deal!’
(cross-posted at caucus99percent.com)
Thanks for the roundup, wd. Here’s my misappropriated mashup cartoon on the topic:
welcome, herr davidly, and double lol! guess i can’t make out the hands (not quite invisible hands?) and is that an eyeball they are holding, say spying from atop the magic mountain? i did get to wondering i) if their rooms are bugged, and ii) how fun it would be to put lysergic acid in their water and wine, and iii) with all that snow, how kewl it would have been if avalanches had buried the conference center.
but hasn’t frau frumpie been calling for EU militarization for some time now? and nato got…erm…nervous?
Get wit the program, wd; it’s Merkel’s famous triangular hand signal, like, almost seriously, y’know: https://www.google.com/search?q=merkel%27s+hands&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiS1My2q_bYAhUHUlAKHUcGAFUQ_AUICigB&biw=1266&bih=700&dpr=1.09
Acid in they drank? Nah, I wouldn’t wanna risk their having more fun than usual but the snowball effect I kinda like. Much like the US, Dtschlnd has been breaking records in the absurdity of exporting destruction w/o the slightest bit of irony that it’s not a point in the oh-so contentious coalition talks underway.
ack! touché, mein herr. dinnae know, but…it does remind me as an aside, when one’s hands assume that pose, and pump bit, it feels eggzaggly as though one’s finger ‘n thumb tips are sliding on glass. why is that? more latr on the rest; after having burned the candle, etc. i need a west! (h/t lily von shtupppp). ach, macron played the ‘climate change’ audience on the mountain well, as did the ever-hypocritical now-meToo ‘climate conscious sir pipeline trudeau. jezum crow.
Oh—& lest ye tink it not contextchel…
(I reckon that’d be the all-seeing button!-)
note the NYT et al doing damage control (in the US) for don Trump in Davos. it’s damage control in the US cuz the Davos crowd have no problem with Trump (beyond style; but he’s not the only rude, foul-mouthed boor in that town), just as the rich in the US have no problem with Trump.
a response to the NYT article, “In New Proposed Subway Elevators, Some See a Terrorism Risk.”
Let me tell you about the very rich.
They hate their children and live in glass towers.
The simplest pleasures are beyond their meager powers
of imagination; mostly, they like to bitch
about the minor incursions of normal life, the itch
of unsanctioned human contact, the fleeting sour
stench of the breathing millions they’ll rush to shower
off in their marble hangars. A muddy ditch
or a modest home appear as misery
defined; they do fear violence of a certain kind,
not terrorism, but a reborn Terror
without the killing—like, meeting the delivery
boy, or paying cash, or waiting in line.
Mere human contact is their Robespierre.
the terrorist is the person in the panic room.
yeah, as i’d told a commenter at c99%, i’d gone outta my way not to make this about julius cheeser. all the pre-davos shite, etc. but i did take the worthy poem over yonder, it’s quite relevant, as is the marxist analysis of the film, and the quote you pulled. ““A thousand men, say, go searchin’ for gold. After six months, one of ’em’s lucky—one out of the thousand. His find represents not only his own labor but that of 999 others to boot…”
but your having said that about the new york slimes caused me to go a-huntin’Unlike, and between the one slimes article i was privy to as the rest went behind a paywall, i found these notes:
“other visitors, Mr. Trump did not wander the pavilions. He attended a reception in his honor by the forum, and then was host at a dinner for about 15 chief executives from firms like Siemens, Nokia, Nestle, HSBC, Anheuser-Busch and Bayer.
In an interview with CNBC to be aired on Friday before his speech, Mr. Trump raised the possibility of rejoining the Pacific partnership, which was negotiated by President Barack Obama but never submitted to Congress amid bipartisan opposition.
“I would do TPP if we were able to make a substantially better deal,” Mr. Trump said. “The deal was terrible; the way it was structured was terrible. If we did a substantially better deal, I would be open to TPP.”
We lowered our corporate tax rate from 35% all the way down to 21%. As a result, millions of workers have received tax cut bonuses from their employers in amounts as large as $3,000,” he said.
Trump said he had cut 22 “burdensome” regulations for every new rule, saying this was freeing businesses and workers to flourish as never before. “Regulation is stealth taxation,” he said, attacking unelected bureaucrats for imposing anti-business and anti-worker rules. “In America, those days are over.”
and he met w/ genocidaire paul kagame, a few others as well. oh: the prez of sweezerland, and i bet he doesn’t know the cabinet takes turns being prez
the bonuses were for the management class at sams clubs, according to the trots, as they closed 60 of them in a day, no notice given to wage slaves. dunno if there were others, i kinda doubt it, though. profiteering is everything.
excellent article & not irrelevant at all:
“A thousand men, say, go searchin’ for gold. After six months, one of ’em’s lucky—one out of the thousand. His find represents not only his own labor but that of 999 others to boot…”
nuke Davos from orbit. it’s the only way to be sure none of those fuckers escape (thanks “Aliens.”)
yer next screen name gonna be: ‘nuke davos from orbit’?
apparently while in davos, herr hair had called out as #FakeNews the nyt’s report that he’d tried to have mueller fired, but that his WH counsel had said he’d quit before he did, and told him how it would look.
wikileaks put this great video up this morning:
i’ve often wondered about US corruption in ukraine far beyond that, including biden’s son getting on some gas board or other. i’m sure wikileaks has plenty more on that that i’ve already forgotten, not just mrs. victoria nuland-kagan. ;-)
so much is up with assange, and more pending that it would take an entire thread to bring it all.
…Had come across this Biden bit of self important braying / bragging somewhere in recent days …one can imagine the loud bellowing and heated outrage of USian Empire Nuland mimics / knobs and useful idiots / tools of MSM propaganda were this Putin or Assad or Kim or an Iranian top side leader claiming to have done this in Ukraine or some other country. Hypocrisy much? Mockery much? Sheesh…
….The long in the tooth WashDC vaudeville act that is DTeam ” Party Figure Head / Leader ” Joe Biden is well past expiration date.
…What USian Empire has been doing in Ukraine since installing The Chocolate Maker as a USian Empire string puppet passes no smell test(s). DTeam brand WarCriminal / Killer Slick Talker Obama and his WH sidekick Uncle Joe ” the fixer ” Biden and Hillary View To A Kill Cackler were happy and content with fronting for gangland Wall St. / Pentagon / CIA gangsters in Ukraine. Ask Icky Vicky Nuland-Kagan.
…In a just world Obama, Biden and Clinton / Nuland would be arrested and handcuffed / perp walked on multiple charges for wanton mass killing of human beings, unethical and immoral conduct and for being wantonly crooked and corrupt. Put on trial with the jury drawn from large victim pools these evil malefactors so willingly and continually worked to create. Let them face their many victims. Be legally found Guilty and Convicted. Taken away in chains. Jailed.
lol; past its expiration date: ‘let them eat rancid bug-infested cake!’ as to a ‘just world’…such a pipedream of hope and change. i just had cause to look at the bern’s ‘our revolution’ FB page. read it and scream. spoiler alert: ukraine is mentioned.
but yes, such different standards for ‘enemies of the D team, R team’.’
but we’re advised to ‘not look back’; guess why? for obomba, he’d meant to double down in the same war crimes x 2 as dubya, different day. but the 2.0 anti-war movement essentially gave him a pass. christ in canoe.
oh, and if you use an actual email address to sign up for emails on a post, you can receive them by email. (hint: i’ve tried to email you in the past.) bless yer heart.
Not sure why my earlier attempt missed, will try again- i had commented thst if Davos gets squashed by an avalanche the survivors can regroup in Queenstown, NZ – midsummer there.
no other comment of yours seems to be hung up i checked. well, queenstown can have them, lol. nice to see you, juliania. on edit: or better yet, let them be shipped to an indentured servant penal colony in australia!
OT, but jason (in the current guise of ‘let them eat wayne dyer) just emailed that his homeless camp in olympia was raided, and they were all evicted, or so i interpreted his message. this is one day after the great PIT homeless count there. he said when i’d asked, that this isn’t his camp. but i reckon his tent (gifted to him by the prior occupant) has a broken zipper. dunno how he could get a new zipper for it, unless some dry cleaners has a seamstress/tailor as well as the exact zipper it needs.
i just can’t think of a way we could raise any money for him here; most all of us have the wolves at the door all the time.
this is what happens when a Governance based on Colonial Meritocra$y [The London Inc./US’ petri-pool, in this instance] denies it was always centered around ultimately – right along with those who lived there first, and those imported there, as if insects – impoverishing the vast majority of its own citizens. And, this is what happens when well to do (and their wannabees) technocrats, pundits, and faux dogooders point to the impoverished in other countries to shut down any discussion of the horrid poverty which has always existed in the US, while walking over the exponentially increasing bodies of their neighbors.
a huge embrace to you Jason, I am so sorry I can’t give more than that intangible embrace. I rarely buy lottery tickets, due to my own falling through the cracks, but if I ever win anything that can help, I’m taking a trip up there to meet and share with you. I lived in Seattle, Washington, very briefly – as a youngster, just prior the JFK assassination- when my dad was getting fucked at Boeing, haven’t been up there since, but would love to drive up to Washington (State, anyone else wonder, every time they see Washington, whether it’s in regards to the US, Pacific Coast State, or the Atlantic Coast US Washington DC [District of Columbia])so you and I could give the big finger to those who would have people ‘dying’ before it’s their time to say goodnight.
(As to zippers, if anyone kind owns a shoe/leather repair shop (as in luggage, …for the now permanently transient which are exponentially increasing. Where does one keep those vital documents to prove legality (whatever the fuck that means) when they are made permanently transient?) that might be a better option in finding a very long zipper.)
I feel so badly that robert parry is back in the hospital, but i’m left wondering who’s there minding the store. norman solomon honking about ‘purging ne-liberal dems’ (akin to TRNN), but this dreck: OMG!
‘The Dangerous Erosion of U.S. Leadership’, January 27, 2018; Despite Donald Trump’s speech to the World Economic Forum in which he attempted to reassure global leaders on his “America First” ideology, the damage to U.S. credibility may already be done, as Alon Ben-Meir explains.
my selective outrages:
“As to international treaties and accords, Trump has completely disregarded our commitment to live up to such agreements. He insists on renegotiating the terms of NAFTA, and effectively withdrew from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (connecting the Americas with Asia and Australia).”
“Trump has further shocked all democracies around the world with his incessant assault on the press. Though a few of his predecessors have occasionally ostracized the press, none has mounted such vile criticism. He accuses all media outlets (except for FOX News) of being the enemy of the people, claiming they are biased and spreading ‘Fake News’ to purposefully malign him and deride his policy initiatives.
Sadly, whereas America was seen as the beacon of freedom and democracy to be emulated, Trump is consciously undermining one of our central constitutional pillars—the free press—to the utter consternation of democracies around the world.”
“Trump seems to be totally oblivious to the reality that without American global leadership, which spans over seven decades, the world will be even more chaotic than today.”
holy hell, consortium news!
‘Robert Parry, the classic investigative journalist, founder and editor of the Consortium News website, has died’.
In his last post on December 31, An Apology and Explanation, he offered these closing words of his long career:
[A]s the New Year dawns – if I could change one thing about America and Western journalism, it would be that we all repudiate “information warfare” in favor of an old-fashioned respect for facts and fairness — and do whatever we can to achieve a truly informed electorate.
Robert’s son Nat Parry, who also writes and edits at Consortium News, gives an overview of Robert’s work in his obituary. There was hardly any large political scandal in the last 40 years, that Robert Parry had not reported on. He truly made a difference.
May he rest in peace.’
b at Moon of Alabama
here’s hoping this is how this life’s end was for him:
Mary Oliver, “White Owl Flies Into and Out of the Field”
Coming down out of the freezing sky
with its depths of light,
like an angel, or a Buddha with wings,
it was beautiful, and accurate,
striking the snow and whatever was there
with a force that left the imprint
of the tips of its wings — five feet apart —
and the grabbing thrust of its feet,
and the indentation of what had been running
through the white valleys of the snow —
and then it rose, gracefully,
and flew back to the frozen marshes
to lurk there, like a little lighthouse,
in the blue shadows —
so I thought:
maybe death isn’t darkness, after all,
but so much light wrapping itself around us —
as soft as feathers —
that we are instantly weary of looking, and looking,
and shut our eyes, not without amazement,
and let ourselves be carried,
as through the translucence of mica,
to the river that is without the least dapple or shadow,
that is nothing but light — scalding, aortal light —
in which we are washed and washed
out of our bones.