Subject : Class Conscious Struggles: “Which Side Are You On?”
Dear Colleagues and Friends of CEIMSA,
The question that remains unanswered is: Will a resilient, class conscious population emerge from the ashes of global capitalism with their survival instinct sufficiently intact to engage in a struggle that will direct us out of this quagmire produced by the death instinct of a few severely deluded “leaders” who are equally enslaved to a socio-economic system based on human sacrifice?
The corporate war against democracy proceeds with every subterfuge imaginable, while technology renders the capitalist ruling class obsolete. This class and their lackeys are perceived as obstacles to social progress in most societies around the world. Installing despotism and engineering mindless obedience seems unlikely to succeed, given the contradictions that the ruling minority can no longer ignore in the face of growing discontent and environmental catastrophe.
A new political order must accompany the new economic order now evolving, if technology is to liberate us from the senile, sadistic pupet show masters, who seek to control our lives and enslave us with the technological unemployment which threatens our existence and the future of the planet.
“For a forest to be green, every tree must have its own leaves.”
Firebird Suite | Fantasia 2000
by Igor Stravinsky, performed by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra under direction of James Levine
Fernand Braudel’s three-volume history of “Civilization and Capitalism” offers methods and theories for understanding the underpinnings of capitalist development over the centuries. In Vol. 1, he discusses the history of “daily life” in the four centuries preceding the Industrial Revolution.
Seeking an explanation for “human progress,” Braudel turns to “a key problem: sources of energy.”
Between the fifteenth and eighteenth centuries, man had at his disposal his own strength and that of his domestic animals; he also had the wind, running water, wood, charcoal and coal –varied but still only modest sources of energy. With the benefit of hindsight, we know that progress could only have been made by concentrating on coal, and particularly in using it systematically, in the form of coke, in iron metallurgy. Coal was in fact used in Europe from the eleventh and twelfth centuries, and in China, according to writings of the time, from the fourth millennium before the Christian era. But men took a very long time to realize that coal was anything more than a supplementary fuel. The discovery of coke itself did not immediately result in its use. (p.336)
The precondition for progress was probably a reasonable balance between human labour and other sources of power. The advantage was illusory when man competed with machines inordinately, as in the ancient world and China, where mechanization was ultimately blocked by cheap labour. There were slaves in Greece and Rome, and too many highly efficient coolies in China. In fact there is never any progress unless a higher value is set on human labour. When man has a certain cost price as a source of energy, then it is necessary to think about aiding him or, better still, replacing him. Man was relieved by domestic animals early on, though the luxury was very unfairly distributed over the world. The history of these ‘engines’ will be clear if we distinguish between the Old and New Worlds from the beginning.(p.339)
On the uneven exploitation of animal power before 1800, Braudel writes:
In America, the situation was comparatively straightforward. All . . . animals [except for the llama, vicunas and turkeys] came from Europe: oxen, horses, mules, sheep, goats, dogs, and poultry. The most important for economic life were mules, which gradually became indispensable as carriers [in most parts of America]. (p.341)
And in his concluding remarks on sources of energy in the pre-industrial world, he writes :
Let us return to Europe at the end of the eighteenth century to formulate two connected remarks: the first on the subject of energy resources as a whole, the second on the machinery available.
(1) We can accurately classify available sources of energy in descending order of importance: first, animal traction; 14 million horses, 24 million oxen, each animal representing a quarter horse-power –that is roughly 10 million horse-power; next, wood, possibly equivalent to 4 or 5 million horse-power; then water-wheel, between 1.5 million and 3 million horse-power; then manpower (50 million workers), representing 900,000 horse-power; finally, sails, at most 233,000 horse-power, without counting the war fleet. This is obviously a far cry from the present-day energy supply; but that is not the point I wish to make/ The interest of this incomplete calculations (in which, it should be pointed out, we have counted neither windmills, nor river boats, nor charcoal, nor even coal) is that it shows incontestably that the two principal sources of energy were draught-animals and wood combustion (windmills, which were not as numerous as watermills, cannot have represented more than a third or a quarter of the power or the water under control). If the mill was not more developed, it was partly for technical reasons (the widespread use of wood (rather than metal) but chiefly because in the places where the mills were sited, there was no use for any greater energy supply, and at this time energy could not be transported. Lack of energy was the major handicap of ancient regime economies. The average watermill gave five times the yield of a hand mill operated by two men –and that was itself a revolution, but the first steam-driven mill would do five times the work of a watermill.
(2) However, a preliminary stage was reached before the industrial revolution. The harnessing of horses, the flames from burning wood, rudimentary engines utilizing wind and river currents, plus an increased number of men at work, all provoked a certain amount of growth in Europe from the fifteenth to the eighteenth century, a slow increase in strength, power and practical understanding. Increasingly active progress in the 1730s and 16740s was built upon this gradual advance. There was thus an often imperceptible or unrecognized industrial pre-revolution in an accumulation of discoveries and technical advances, some of them spectacular, others almost invisible: various types of gear-wheels, jacks;, articulated transmission belts, the ‘ingenious system of reciprocating movement’, the fly-wheel that regularized any momentum, rolling mills, more and more complicated machinery for the mines. And there were so many other innovations: looms for knitting and manufacturing ribbons, chemical processes. ‘It was during the second half of the eighteenth century that the first attempts were made to adapt lathes, borers and drilling machines [tools which had long been known] to industrial use.’ It was the mechanization of weaving and spinning processes at the same time that launched the English economy. Nevertheless what was lacking before these imagined or realized machines could be fully employed was a surplus of easily mobilized --and that means easily transportable—energy. But the machinery existed and was constantly being perfected. It is revealing to see how European travelers unfailingly comment on the contrast between the primitive machinery in use in India and China, and the quality and refinement of its products. ‘One is amazed at the simplicity of the instruments used to make the finest silks in China,’ writes one visitor, and his words are echoed in almost identical terms by another writing about the famous cotton muslins of India.
With the coming of steam, the pace of the West increased as if by magic. But the magic can be explained: it had been prepared and made possible in advance. To paraphrase a historian (Pierre Léon), first came evolution (a slow rise) and then revolution (an acceleration): two connected movements.(pp.371-372)
The 17 items below give evidence to the systemic debacle we are now experiencing due to internal contradictions within the structures of Late Capitalism,
one of which is the persistent demand for a better life, which today means public control over technology. If we give this up, we loose everything !
Professor emeritus of American Studies
Director of Research
University of Paris-Nanterre
Center for the Advanced Study of American Institutions and Social Movements
The University of California-San Diego
No 'Pause' in Global Warming: Oceans Heating Up and Sea Levels Rising at Alarming Pace
UC-Berkeley climate scientist Zeke Hausfather details the findings of a new report that confirms NOAA findings about climate change.
Confirmation Hearings for Trump's Climate-Denying Cabinet Begin Next Week
Lindsay Meiman of 350.org discusses next Monday's Day Against Denial demonstrations against what some are calling the most fossil fuel-friendly cabinet in history.
New Resource Exposes 'Corporate Chieftains' Filling Trump Cabinet
by Andrea Germanos
"We're facing the prospect of a government literally of the Exxons, by the Goldman Sachses, and for the Kochs"
When Fear Comes
by Chris Hedges
Al-Jazeera Investigation Reveals Israel Lobby's Influence in the UK
Electronic Intifada's Asa Winstanley says Israel has set up astroturf organizations in the UK whose purpose is to sabotage Palestine solidarity
From: "Alison Weir, If Americans Knew" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sent: Wednesday, 11 January, 2017
Subject: Tragic news and examples of what you can do
We're profoundly saddened to report that Israeli forces killed a 33-year-old Palestinian man yesterday during a 2 a.m. raid on the al-Far’a refugee camp near Nablus. The victim's name is Mohammad Subhi Ahmed Khamis Salhi (please see our Timeline for all those killed since 2,000).
According to Mohammad's mother, at about 2:00 a.m. on January 10th Israeli forces surrounded the family house. Mohammad and his elderly mother then heard noise in the corridor and went out of their bedroom. When his mother saw the soldiers, she stood between them and her son, who had recently been released from serving three years in an Israeli prison.
An Israeli soldier ordered her to sit down, but when she refused, the soldier forced her down, pulled out a gun with a silencer, and fired five bullets at Mohammad at point-blank range. The bullets penetrated his neck, chest, hand, armpit, pelvis and thigh.
The Israeli military released a statement on the killing, claiming that Mohammad attacked them with a knife, and this is the version that western media are repeating in their headline:"Israeli troops shoot dead knife-wielding Palestinian attacker" (ABC News, Fox News, Salon, Roanoke Times,KCTVSeattle Times, News 9, Oklahoma, etc)
What you can do about slanted news reporting on Palestine:
Write a letter to the editor of your local newspaper -- be sure to include small, community newspapers among those you write to.
Information about how to write and submit such letters is available here.
Such letters won't always be published, of course, but when they do get in, they can be a valuable way to disseminate facts, as well as to direct people to additional resources for information, such as the If Americans Knew website and/or my book.
The Sentinel-Record (Hot Springs, Arkansas)
A U.S. ally? How?
Much has been publicized and made about the recent U.N. resolution regarding Israel and Palestinian settlement. I, for one, don't care, as a country I think we have much bigger issues to deal with than continuing to be the world's police force.
I have nothing against Israel, Palestine or anyone else in that part of the war. However, when I continually hear the term of "ally" used in regard to our relationship with Israel, it makes me ponder the definition. Ally? The United States has been at war or in combat in the Middle East for all but a few years beginning in 1990, the initial "Gulf War." Not once has Israel done a thing in regards to troops or any type of support. I don't blame them, most of these wars have been ill founded and poorly strategized.
Still, it doesn't fit the definition of "ally." An "ally" that, according to numerous sources, including the book "Against our Better Judgement" by Alison Weir, we give $10.2 million dollars daily in military aid. Yes, let me repeat that: $10.2 million dollars daily.
I wish nothing bad on the Israeli people, but let's be honest: this is a region that's been at war or conflict for hundreds of years. It's a dumpster fire, and as an American, I'd just as soon see us completely disregard and ignore the entire area. Nothing we've ever attempted to do has resulted in peace, nor will it in the future.
And the $10.2 million daily? Better spent at home, taking care of our own problems.
Editorial on 01/09/2017
Enjoyed Nevada's Column
Yes, true friends are honest.
I applaud Pat Nevada for her opinion piece, Friends Must be Honest (Jan 9, 2017), which begins to address the long standing and very difficult situation between Israel and Palestine in a fair and objective way. And I applaud the Gettysburg Times for publishing the piece. The resolution of a conflict or situation rife with tension must start with honesty and a sincere desire to right a wrong. The US taxpayers have invested billions of dollars in the Israel/ Palestine situation and deserve to see some positive results.
Any reader who agrees that it is time to resolve some of the tension and end this particular conflict in the Middle East might start with a book titled “Against Our Better Judgement” by journalist Alison Weir. Weir has done an amazing job of researching the roots of the tension and thus helps the reader to begin to see clearly the way forward. The book is short and to the point and will bring a deep level of understanding to the reader who is curious about the US role in the current tensions in the Middle East. Be sure to read the endnotes as they will greatly augment your awareness of the history of the situation. After reading this book, the reader will want to advocate to elected officials to work to resolve the conflict in a just way. The book is easily available through Amazon and is inexpensive at only $10.
Thank you for your courage in writing about this situation Pat Nevada. It is time for the US government to be an honest broker for peace – or step aside and let someone else be so.
Sandra R Mackie, Gettysburg, PA
Thanks to all of you who have already been writing letters to the editor! We encourage others to also utilize this method for informing Americans of the facts.
As always, thank you for your support.
Alison Weir & the If Americans Knew Team
119 Palestinians and 12 Israelis were killed by someone from the other side in 2016.
ABOUT US If Americans Knew is a nonpartisan educational organization. We are happy to provide information on Israel-Palestine to individuals and groups of all religious, ethnic, racial, and political backgrounds. We support justice, truth, equal rights and respect for all human beings, and we oppose racism, supremacism, and discrimination of all forms. Mission Statement
CONTACT US To invite Alison Weir to give a presentation on Israel-Palestine, or to learn more about putting up a billboard in your city, write here. For general comments or questions, write here. Order educational materials to distribute from our website. Mailing address: If Americans Knew, 5694 Mission Center Rd, Suite 602-710, San Diego, CA 92108. Phone: 202-631-4060
A Case Study in the Creation of False News
For many weeks we have witnessed the extraordinary attack by the CIA and its assets in Congress and the media on Donald Trump’s election.
In an unprecedented effort to delegitimize Trump’s election as the product of Russian interference in the election, the CIA, media, senators and
representatives have consistently made wild accusations for which they have no evidence. The CIA’s message to Trump is clear: Get in line with our agenda,
or we are going to mess you over. It is clear that the CIA is warring against Trump. But the CIA’s media assets have turned the facts on their head and are blaming Trump for having a negative view of the CIA.
by Patrick Christys
VLADIMIR Putin has been warned he is doomed to failure in Ukraine and that 2017 will be a year of anti-Russian aggression.
Circus of Liars: How Trump and the GOP Are At Odds Over Alleged Russian Hack
by Juan Cole
Hannity Interview WikiLeaks Founder Julian Assange
by Fox News
What Impact Will Trump Presidency Have on Freedom of Edward Snowden &
Julian Assange ?
"Exactly the same playbook was used against [Daniel] Ellsberg that is now being used against Snowden, which is to say, ’Don’t listen to these disclosures. Don’t regard this person as a hero for exposing our corruption and lawbreaking. Focus instead on the fact that these are traitors working with our enemies."
Although we will never know for sure to what extent Cambridge Analytica has contributed to Trump’s election win, we can be certain that the method, inexpensive as compared to demographic profiling, will be used masively in the future, most certainly in the upcoming elections in France and the Netherlands (Spring 2017) and Germany (Fall 2017).
Obama’s Propaganda Gift to Trump
by Margaret Kimberley
“Some members of the ruling classes believe that their survival depends on America controlling or crushing the rest of the world.”
Airstrikes by the United States and its allies against two Syrian army positions Sept. 17 killed at least 62 Syrian troops and wounded dozens more.
The attack was quickly treated as a non-story by the U.S. news media; U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) claimed the strikes were carried out
in the mistaken belief that Islamic State forces were being targeted, and the story disappeared.
Journalist Glenn Greenwald examines the track record of intelligence chiefs, including CIA Director John Brennan, FBI Director James Comey and Director of National Intelligence James Clapper.
Wednesday January 11, 2017
Trump Received Unsubstantiated
Report That Russia Had
Information About Him by SCOTT SHANE, ADAM
GOLDMAN and MATTHEW ROSENBERG
The material was considered so
potentially explosive that the intelligence agencies decided that the
president and the president-elect needed to be told and that the agencies
Damaging Information About Him
by SCOTT SHANE, ADAM GOLDMAN and MATTHEW ROSENBERG
The material was considered so potentially explosive that the intelligence agencies decided that the president and the president-elect needed to be told and that the agencies were
actively investigating it.
by Paul Craig Roberts
The Whole Bushel: Stop It With These False Prophets
In the first episode of the Whole Bushel, Baltimore rapper Eze Jackson sits down with three local artists: singer Ama Chandra, rapper Ashley Sierra, and spoken word artist Neptune the Poet. They discuss the widespread disillusionment with electoral politics, the need for police accountability, and the distinction between White and Black feminism.