(Afterwords) – Five banks control half of all U.S. financial assets, and six conglomerates control 90 percent of our media.
Monopolies aren’t merely un-American — they’re virulently anti-American. They suppress our fundamental values of fairness and opportunity for all.
Our people have instinctively rebelled at monopoly avarice — from the Boston Tea Party to the populist movement, labor unions, trust busters, muckrakers, the New Deal, and even Ralph Nader.
Yet, in just the last couple of decades, corporate elites and their public officials have enshrined monopoly power as a legitimate form of business in our land, aggressively protected by lawmakers, regulators, and judges.
A Model of the American System(ODT)
“Wilbur Ross is a cartoon stereotype of a Wall Street fat cat with no interest in anyone but himself. He has shady ties to Russia and China, serious business conflicts, and a history of cheating people out of their homes.
Paul Manafort, Donald Trump’s campaign manager, is being tried for money laundering, keeping some 15 illegal foreign accounts, and cheating the government out of the taxes he rightfully owed, among a host of other crimes.
Demographers tell us that the United States of America will sometime, in the next couple of decades, become the first nation on Earth to be majority minority. For many of us, that is a cause for celebration. It is, in part, what makes this country so unique and miraculous.
For many Americans — particularly those white Americans who have in one way or another benefited from the privileges that come with their particular skin tone — this is a very scary thing. It’s becoming more and more difficult to say with certainty what it means to be “American.” As everyone knows, the easiest way to identify yourself is in opposition to another. Thus, a large swath of Americans feel as though their very identity is under attack. They are desperately looking for scapegoats, for opposing forces to help them define who they are.
Unlike in the vast majority of fatal shootings by police officers, someone is going to prison for the 2015 death of 16-year-old A’Donte Washington in Alabama. It just isn’t the police officer who shot him.
Lakeith Smith was sentenced last week to 30 years for A’Donte’s murder, even though no one disputes it was an officer’s bullet that killed him. Smith is not even accused of having possessed a weapon. Under the state’s accomplice law, co-defendants can be guilty of murder if a death occurs when they are in the midst of committing a felony.
Felony murder: why a teenager who didn’t kill anyone faces 55 years in jail
Smith was one of five teens who were allegedly committing a burglary when responding officers opened fire, killing A’Donte. Smith, now 18, was also sentenced to another 35 years for crimes related to the the burglary, for a total of 65 years.
Twenty-six years ago the Soviet Union collapsed under the weight of its military commitments, its oppressive surveillance bureaucracy, and its regime’s loss of legitimacy. That experience has lessons for Trump’s America writes Ian McAuley.
The US-backed Saudi-led war on Yemen is keeping two million children out of school (Yemen is a country of 27 million). Worse, schools and schoolchildren have repeatedly been struck from the air by Saudi, UAE, Moroccan and Jordanian pilots using American-supplied planes and bombs, in a campaign backed by Washington and the Pentagon and the United Kingdom. The US military supplies logistics, refueling and targeting advice to the aggressors.
The numbers are real, and overall, 48 percent of Americans said they “disapprove strongly” of Trump’s performance. Former president’s Bill Clinton and Barack Obama never reached that milestone, and George W. Bush only did so in his second term, according to the Washington Post. Nearly a majority of Americans (48 percent) also view “the country’s leadership in the world as weaker since Trump was inaugurated,” the Post reported. Only 27 percent see it as stronger.
The Muslim ban even reached over to a white former Prime Minister, just because he visited Iran two years ago.
International diplomacy experts have expressed their alarm at what they describe as a startling disruption to US-Australia relations this week.
By Tom Engelhardt | ( Tomdispatch.com ) | – – This is not about Donald Trump. And I mean it. …
America is an idea in a way that Australia never has been.
Source: America the idea
She’s been seen online 66 million times, but the D.C. government still won’t let her get a new license.
“Dividing the average of the number of people killed by police with the number of American citizens not in the military who were killed from terrorism, you get the 58, suggesting Americans are actually 58 times more likely to be killed by a police officer than by a terrorist.”
Once the statistics were released showing that American citizens are eight times more likely to be killed by cops in their own nation than terrorists, increased attention turned to the problem of police misconduct in the United States.
But given recent FBI data from which a much higher figure can be extracted, that attention is likely to become even more critical. When calculated in total, it turns out that Americans are now 58 times more likely to be killed by US cops than terrorists.
As reported by Sputnik news, the data includes a figure of 545 people who were killed by local or state law enforcement officers that went uncounted in previous annual crime statistics. And that’s not even accounting for the majority of violent police encounters which more often than not go unreported.
The same research concludes that an average of 928 people were killed by police per year during the same period – though that number could be a low estimate, due to the fact that police do not often report their own misconduct.
Perhaps even more eery is that according to a US Department of State study, the number of Americans killed by terrorists in the same time period was 16.
Sputnik summarizes the simple math, saying, “Dividing the average of the number of people killed by police with the number of American citizens not in the military who were killed from terrorism, you get the number 58, suggesting Americans are actually 58 times more likely to be killed by a police offer than by a terrorist.”
This sobering find reminds us all to be vigilant of who and what system we put our trust in. At the end of the day, it’s best to know your truth, be aware of the happenings in the world, and prepare for the worst while simutaneously hoping for the best.
If you’re interested in gaining some broader perspective on how frequently cops in the United States are abusing and killing Americans, watch America’s Largest Street Gang (documentary) below:
Vladimir Putin used a meeting with foreign journalists and Russia experts to rail against the United States and the current world order, blaming Washington for many current global problems, including unrest in Ukraine and Islamic terrorism.
Putin said that over the past two decades, the US had behaved as if it were someone “nouveau riche who had suddenly received a lot of wealth – in this case, global leadership”. Instead of using its powers wisely, said Putin, the US had created a unilateral and unfair system.
In a terse opening statement before taking questions for nearly three hours, Putin said: “The exceptionalism of the United States, the way they implement their leadership, is it really a benefit? And their worldwide intervention brings peace and stability, progress and peak of democracy? Maybe we should relax and enjoy this splendour? No!”
. “Unilateral dictatorship and obtrusion of the patterns leads to opposite result. Instead of conflicts settlement – their escalation. Instead of sovereign, stable states – growing chaos. Instead of democracy – support for very dubious people, such as neo-Nazis and Islamic extremists,” he said.
The president denied claims that Russia’s behaviour in Ukraine had been aggressive: “Statements that Russia is trying to reinstate some sort of empire, that it is encroaching on the sovereignty of its neighbours, are groundless,” he said.
However, when one British newspaper reporter asked him specifically about the repeated reports of Russian army troops operating in east Ukraine, Putin chose to ignore the question completely.
Putin was also asked about a remark by a top aide on the previous day of the forum that “if there is no Putin there is no Russia”. Vyacheslav Volodin said any attack on the Russian president should be considered to be an attack on Russia itself. Putin said he believed Russia could survive without him, but said he did not think he could survive without Russia: “Russia is everything to me, that is definitely a fact. I could not imagine myself separated from Russia for a single second.