Well, Here’s how I feel about Barack, OK?
Let’s all be chaps. I mean friends,not some division of the underpaying, overcharging Ralph Lauren Polo products. First, another prayer (we all pray to the same God ok?) for Yusor Mohammad Abu-Salha, 21; her husband, Mr. Barakat, 23; and her sister, Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha, 19.
The real enemies, if anyone at all, are those decimating the earth, getting a major profit from the hard work of underpaid labor in Asia, South America, and, um the USA, not to mention India and the Middle East in Specific.
People of all denominations and spiritual beliefs need to come together to save the earth, demand a living wage, replace the hogs at the top of the status quo, and use democracy (when available) to change the laws to create a system of social safety nets and RESOURCE PRESERVATIION everywhere from the Amazon rain forests to the entire oceans of the world.
Why not take the world’s massive underemployed and unemployed population and have them scoop plastic out of the ocean.
Why not ban plastic, not just plastic bags? What’s wrong with glass?
The chance now, to not just honor the lives of the victims, but to use this to unite EVERYONE on the planet in a movement to save the planet and create *peace* for everyone not just the gated community people.
For international reader: There is no place better than Chapel Hill to start an NGO, to start an activist movement, to take back the planet for everyone.
Massive changes of laws must occur for this to work out. GATT 2, GATT 1,NAFTA and almost any other free trade agreement is set up to profit from cheap labor.
Labor unions which brought us the best pay and best working conditions and best lives possible, are now powerless as any strike can be met with “ok then we will just move the entire line of manufacturing abroad.” No More strike ,and no more jobs at all in the USA.
Everyone except the shareho0lder class has been hurt by these pernicious WTO rules which supplant national sovereignty with “all-the-money-to-the-rich” schemes that resemble feudalism.
Fundamentalsim is scary in the Christian world and not exactly helpful anywhere else. Fundamentalism means “my way or the hiway” or “my way or death to infidels” but that means perpetual war, and the USA has attacked 91 times since World War II, notably in Korea, Vietnam, Nicaragua, Serbia, Iraq (1,2,3) Afghanistan, Pakistan, (where next, Ukraine or Korea again?)
As an American I’m willing to give up my time to prove that as human beings we are as nice as anyone else, and that it is our GOVERNMENT that smells out loud.
This is true for everyone I’ve met either on the International Peace Walk in Russia in 1987 and again in the USA in 1989 or in my work in South Korea, or in the 31 other countries I’ve been in.
But this is about the movement, that should be larger than Occupy because the goals are even more radical in the face of this divided world. DO NOT LET THE BIG WIGS AT THE TOP DIVIDE US ANY LONGER!
It’s our PLANET, God help us make CHAPS a reality.
Genocide, Slavery, Greed
We cry for the slavery that led to such wealth,
This is not just the land of the free.
We witness genocide all over this earth.
What can we do to end greed?
We cry for the land, full of modified crops
We must work to save human life.
What will our grandchildren have to live through
Since our appetite causes such strife?
The oil wars that started a decade ago
Have moved toward the Caspian Sea.
We are the dissidents, loud, without fear,
Even if we are cut at the knees.
We cry for the news they keep off TV,
The grapevine could snap any day.
Disinformation is the age we live in,
So who’s going to show us the way?
The answer is simple, we grow as a team,
A new brotherhood in the light.
We must build the village, invite all your friends,
This is no time to give up the fight!
They have all the bombs, the juntas abound,
Monsanto is spraying the poor.
We must dig our hands into arable land
Or genetics will foul every spore.
Profit mongers have sucked the earth dry,
We must reclaim all that we can.
Industrial China, the last frontier,
Soon money will own every man.
The kids on the streets are locked-down together,
Push a bike, and you could get ten years!
All this is forced because we stopped caring,
Yet some offer blood, sweat and tears.
We couldn’t stop bosses from shipping our jobs,
The replacement is for-profit jails.
Our schools are rotting, so teach if you can,
Where it counts, not Harvard or Yale.
The time is upon us, united as friends
We can make anything grow.
Come join the party, sing and dance all the day,
Tomorrow we get out the vote.
We cry for the genocide, slavery, greed
That persists after thousands of years.
It’s late, but there’s time, if we really work hard
We can stop the torrent of tears.
Harold Lear’s Swan Song
Dr. Bob and the Disco Beaver played its last show ever at Speakeasy on March 6. It was packed like sardines, which was appropriate, since many were initiated as “Honorary Newfoundlanders” by “kissing the fish” and slamming an insane Canadian whisky named “Screech,” at the end of the night.
Also onstage was the G-Jay band, with a recently revamped line up of Tim Crawford (saxophone), Norbert Morvan (vocals and MC “Royale”), Tony Boyd (bass), Gordon MacKay (guitar), Caleb MacIvor (keys, vocals, songwriter, originator, bandleader, task master and booking agent), Ed McEntee (drums), and Carlos Gentile (percussion).
The packed bar had barely enough room for dancers to improvise. Couples were spotted doing the Mashed Potato, the Bus Stop, and the dance that has made Speakeasy famous, the “your-place-or-mine?” And who could resist a swing around the dance floor with the blues-driven, hard-driving guitar riffs of Harold Lear and his accomplished band?
You could see the emotion of playing his last gig in Korea on Harold’s face, but he scored a tenured professorship in New Brunswick, Canada, and could not resist teaching sociology, though his PhD is in Eastern Philosophy. “My masters degree is in sociology, so it’s not a big stretch,” he said with his characteristic smile. His music and merry-making will be much missed. He named the night “Saturday Mayhem,” and it was not shocking that many who knew him from his latest stint in Suncheon made the trek to bid him adieu.
Not to be outdone (except notably on drums and guitar) the G-Jay band also got our feet moving, as Norbert toasted the crowd, and the band played funk, reggae and rock numbers from the 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s, as well as Caleb’s soulful originals. You couldn’t be faulted for thinking this band was formed at a catholic church, what with the Macs and Mcs, and it turns out bassist Tony Boyd hails from Scotland itself, thus not one of the millions that are part of the Irish and Scottish Diaspora.
As a music critic, I’d pick Tim Crawford as the undisputed star of the G-Jay band. His sax riffs began halfway through the Disco Beaver’s first set (he was in the upstairs pool room, or precisely, in the kitchen/storage room next to it at the time). His runs, more Charlie Parker than Eric Dolphy, kept going non-stop, except for a brief breathing period to walk downstairs and set his microphone height. Did he “warm up” during the stage preparation? Yes. Did his hyperkinetic, beautiful, lyrical alto sax solos continue through everything but other solos? Indeed. Was it a distraction to Norbert’s singing? I think not. Why not? Because Crawford is good. Very good.
You can tell these guys love having a gig outside the realm of teaching English, as the pre-show banter was flowing like earth-rumbling splashes emanating from Viagra Falls. “One night we had a small crown, maybe 12 people, but all 12 were dancing. One dude fell, broke our mike stand and knocked himself out. We picked him up and he kept dancing,” McIvor said. “We’ve made it into a Korean documentary, and play just about everywhere we can find. On the originals I write the music, and Norbert writes the words…the songs grow organically.”
Many of the members are “lifers” in Korea, meaning, once they arrived here and discovered the gentle culture, sincere friendships and positive working conditions, they stayed for life. Three are married, four are Canadian, two are from the US and one is Scottish. They play out of Jeon Ju. “Being right in the middle of the peninsula is an advantage when it comes to playing gigs all over the country,” MacIvor said. He also said there were no “real leaders” in the band, and that they are “living the dream,” by being able to play so often.
“We changed a lot of songs this year, with new members. Everyone brings in ideas for cover songs and then I shoot them down,” MacIvor said, laughing. “We have an advantage because we can play sets of covers with just three members, so we’re flexible in case some people are too tied up to make a gig.”
Dr. Bob and the Disco Beaver played near-perfect renditions of classics like the James Gang’s “Funk 49,” Stevie Wonder’s “Superstitious” and, to allow a little improvisational guitar freedom, Hendrix’ “Voodoo Chile.” G-Jay then kept the “Groove Thing” going with originals like “Faces,” and a memorable cover of the Specials “(a message for you ) Rudy.” The trombones were not missed, with Crawford’s sax work, and the appropriate multicultural Specials were great to hear, as it had been a while, since there is nothing like a classic rock or rock station anywhere near Gwangju. You would think GFN would cater to the tastes of the foreigners in town, with it being the Gwangju Foreigners Network, instead they play KPOP songs that are just as often from the bands managed by the director’s son than from KPOP itself. There would still be plenty of time for a genuine rock hour or two per day, but helping foreigners feel at home is apparently not the goal of the station. I like what Pete Ross does, but his show is not rock either, but 75% mamby-pamby British obscurities.
This too is why the Disco Beavers will be missed, and why we hope the G-Jay band will be back. Speakeasy impresario Derek does a great job locating Korea’s talent, and there is little doubt that new bands shall arise from the pool of English teachers. There is no way any will touch the guitar mastery of Harold Lear though, as his musical resume includes a stint with Ringo Starr, and by golly, if Harold’s good enough to be a tenured sociology professor at New Brunswick, and has the musical chops to be Ringo Starr’s guitarist, that’s one mighty hard act to follow.
First Published in the Gwangju News: http://www.gwangjunewsgic.com/
Christmas 2006 (7?, 8?, 9?…2012….)
(All Together now, in Chipmunk-esque squeals, just like Alvin and the Chipmunks have sung it since the 60s)
Christmas comes but once a year,
soldiers bloodied, Mother’s tears,
bombs exploding in the air,
it’s Christmas everywhere!
Barons sipping booze or tea,
greed leads to frivolity,
one man’s toil is another-kids toy,
it’s Christmas in Hanoi.
Farm girls walk to city lights,
paddies shimmer by moonlight,
no one left to grow rice high,
it’s Christmas in Shanghai.
Now she sits at sewing machines,
making clothes for Wal-Mart Queens
she takes home a buck a day,
it’s Christmas in Bombay.
One hundred forty hour weeks,
raped and left no food to eat,
import maids, Sri Lanka’s poor,
it’s Christmas Singapore.
Catholic Mass in Spanish here,
Argentina has great fear
The IMF has had their say
Now who is going to pay?
Now the Dems have won their seats
still no nerve to scream “impeach,”
It seems they’re also on the take,
Which SUCKS for goodness sake!
Bush is set on World War three
claims tax cuts will set us free
Look, a tear in Laura’s eye
The Whitehouse is a sty.
Habeas Corpus is now gone
Now King George can have his fun
The law was passed here just in time
To root-out left-wing slime.
Osama thumbs his princely nose
Knowing Dad is Bush’s Bro,
The oil secured keeps China at bay
It’s Christmas all the way.
Barack Obama’s our new man
He spreads the war to Pakistan,
Drones are flying up above
Spreading Christmas love.
Now Osama’s dead and gone
No excuse for wars, prolonged,
Yet we aim at Kim Jung Eun,
(Iran, we’re coming soon!)
So go out and shop some more
Buy something from every store
The fascist status quo gains power
with every shopping hour.
Christmas comes but once a year,
Bloodied soldiers, Mother’s tears,
bombs exploding in the air
it’s Christmas everywhere!
Bombs exploding in the air
It’s Christmas everywhere!
Copyright, Doug Stuber, 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given, and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.
Here’s a big reason NOT to vote for or support Hillary Clinton.
Look, Robert Reich, with more credits than I, figures if Hillary would
just COURT the downwardly mobile American middle class (but how, by
promising to bring jobs back?) then she could win that way in 2016.
Oh please, this is so Democratic an approach, but both her husband and Obama have proven
they are split tongued establishmentarians.
My response is on the bottom of that piece, but also here :
But is was William J. Clinton who pushed HARD for NAFTA, thus hurting the blue collar workers (Perot had this part right) with the sucking sound of jobs moving to Mexico, then did it again with the pushing onto Democrats to pass GATT 2 which formed the World Trade Organization, thus broadening the job moves to Asia and the rest of the world. Bill was at it again with the 1995 Welfare Reform Act, that took so much away from low or no income Americans, a group that was growing exponentially thanks to his free trade ruse. And yet again with the 1995 Banking Reform Act that allowed banks to lend $30 for every $1.00 they had, thus causing, a little later, the 2008 meltdown due to sub-prime loans. The Sub was right, but these loans were guaranteed to fail, then the banks took out derivatives PAYING them when the loans failed, then they foreclosed the houses and sold them for peanuts (having locked in a gain via derivatives) and GOD FORBID, got BAILED OUT to boot, thus assuring two huge wins and a bonus (as in bonus check, which continued) of whatever they sold the houses for. What makes you Robert Reich, or any other Democrat think that Hillary would be any different? COME ON, be real, if you want change, create a viable pro-labor, pro environment, anti-war third party,and work hard to help it win a few seats.
I’m willing to move back to the USA, give up a dandy job (anyone out there get 23 weeks off a year?) and rejoin the political fray IF and only IF a genuine pro-labor, pro environment, anti-
war party gets itself up and rolling in earnest.
Sweden has NO ARMY. How about that! Easy for them to do, THEY HAVE no enemies.
I don’t know a single soul who has a THING against Sweden, what’s not to like?
Meanwhile, Obama is backing the Junta Thugs in Kiev. Putin hasn’t flinched…so far.
OK so we should defend ourselves, but for STARTERS, how about closing each and every out-of-country military base, and letting the soldiers opt into pollution clean up at their CURRENT pay rate, or even higher.
Main article: List of United States military bases
British Indian Ocean Territory – Joint UK-U.S. Air/Naval base on Diego Garcia, a territory of the UK
Germany – more than 30,000 personnel, 56 U.S. Army facilities, 5 USAF/NATO bases, 1 USMC camp, and 1 regional medical center
Guam – U.S. Territory
Italy – The home base of U.S. naval ships in the Mediterranean, with four military bases: three Navy bases (Naples, La Maddalena, Gaeta), and one Air Force base (Vicenza) – totaling approximately 23,000 personnel
Japan – more than 50,000 personnel (not including dependents), the United States 7th Fleet, and the 3rd MEU
Turkey – Air Force bases in Adana and Izmir
United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom – about 11,000 personnel
This list is incorrect on the small side.
SO THAT’s why we have enemies, I get it!
Ah forget it. Maybe I’ll stay and pay $34.00 a month for health insurance, and visit
the doctor without an appointment or waiting. And get 1.5 hours of eastern medicine
physical therapy on my knees for Ahem $3.00.
The supreme court makes me sick.
US Fascism began in 1980 in earnest, and has not abated since. Wake up folks. 92 countries attacked since World War II, and for what? Profit, that’s for what.
Here’s what the Ukrainians who were supporting the Stepan Bandera Fascist government are capable of. Not all Ukrainians supported that government. But the new 2014 “government” smells a lot alike. This type of thing was repeated in Odessa May 2, 2014 with support of the USA.
And here is how one of the Kiev Junta leadership Yatsenuk was “greeted” in Germany. Yet the USA insists on backing these brutal thugs. If ethnic cleansing of Russians continues in Eastern Ukraine, Putin may react. If he reacts, what has amounted to a creeping World War Three may break out in earnest. Oh NOOOOOOOOOO!
Anyone who thinks that Kiev burning DURING the Sochi Winter Olympics was a mere coincidence doesn’t follow the CIA very well, Nor Nato Secret Services. Plenty of evidence suggests outside players are continuing the bloodshed in Kiev, while genuine bloodthirsty Ukrainians (not all Ukrainians are nuts, let’s separate the sinners from the innocent here) are maurading, and murdering in Odessa, Crimea, and other parts of eastern Ukraine that are Russian enclaves. It’s Genocide in slow motion just as Slobo Milosovic’s attacks on Muslims were meant to be complete. But in many ways he was also goaded and forced to react in a war that was ALSO cooked up by western spies. The evidence for this is overwhelming. 30,000+ died in NATO and USA air strikes in Belgrade, and how many of those were “enemy combatants?” We also coated bombs with uranium and bombed Serbia’s once-rich agricultural lands so that food from that region is no longer acceptable, and uh, Serbia had once fed all of Yugoslavia, and beyond.
OK the Slavic world has had a lot of things brewing for centuries, this is true, but with the natural gas pipeline in play, and the USA clearly backing the Junta (Remember when Bush and Condy Rize also Backed Pervez Musharraf, AFTER HE LOST A DEMOCRATIC ELECTION to Asif Ali Zardari the replacement for Benazir Bhutto who was assassinated in a bombing on 27 December 2007. Even though Musharraf could not beat a last-minute replacement, He seized power and Bush and Rice BACKED HIM. Wow how undemocratic can you get? Muneer Malick, of the Supreme Court Legal society in Pakistan used to stand on top of buildings with a Nullhorn shouting down Musharraf, until he was poisoned. At that he still sent out YOUTUBE videos while deathly ill. He survived. Long may you live, friend.
Well let’s See, how about selecting known Drug lord Hamid Karzai as president of Afghanistan? Parliamentarian Malali Joya stood repeatedly to read charges against Karzai until she was thrown out of Parliament illegally and had at least 5 assassination attempts on her life. Karzai is such a puppet he recently did this:
NEW DELHI: Even as India has stopped short of blaming any Pakistan-based terrorist group for the attack on its consulate in Heart last Friday, Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai has blamed the Lashkar-e-Taiba for the strike that was foiled by Afghan security forces and Indian paramilitary forces. Karzai, who met Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Delhi on Tuesday, claimed that the Afghanistan government had received information from a Western intelligence agency that the attackers belonged to the LeT.
Remember, Obama pledged to bring the troops home before the 2008 election? HA, all they did was move over to Pakistan, where, Ostensibly, the last part of the Afghan oil pipeline must run to circumvent Iran and deliver to tankers in the Indian Ocean. WAKE UP FOLKS!
All in favor of fracking and the Keystone Pipeline please take a bus home and sell your car(s).
The Successes and Failures of Barack Obama
Posted on April 2, 2014 and May 8, 2014 by dougstuber
This will be the talk on Saturday May 10th at the Gwangju International Center, please attend, if you can.
Success #1, he beat Hillary Clinton in the Primaries before the 2008 US Presidential elections to become the Democrat Party Nominee. He did this with 62% of his campaign funding in the primary stage coming from registered Republicans. He succeeded again in defeating John McCain and his ill-thought-out running mate Sarah Palin. This pick was as if McCain did not want to win.
But the pick was not nearly as disturbing as Barack Obama’s pick of Joseph Biden. Why? Because Biden had been the MOST pro-War democrat in the house Foreign Affairs Committee ever. And he led that committee to steer votes in favor of huge military overspending and unwise and unnecessary wars throughout his career. *****
Failure 1) (F-1)Obama ran on a platform of “We’re Going To Change Washington” and he not only failed to change Washington, in most cases he did not even try, or caved in to Republican demands even when the House, Senate and White House were ALL in Democratic control. How is this possible? Because so many Democrats are owned by the same corporations that own Republicans, for one, and, all but two being millionaires themselves, are inclined to vote for bail-outs for the rich (most of which happened before Obama took office, right at the end of Bush Junior’s reign with Goldman Sachs President / Secretary of the Treasury Henry “Hank” Paulson jamming a bill through congress that handed the richest bankers in the world trillions of dollars [BERNANKE HANDS OUT $16+ TRILLION in ZERO% GIFTS TO BANKS…]http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/08/foreclosure-settlement-fails-mortgage_n_1754018.html) to clean up their own sickeningly bad investment choices that had, in turn, caused a meltdown in the US housing markets to the tune of 10,000 home foreclosures a day…The USA is now experiencing less foreclosures, at “only” 1,400 PER DAY. Mind you the daily foreclosure figures in the USA Depression of the 1930s were nowhere near as high as this six year low for the USA. This amounts to failure number 2. *****
These are entire families financially ruined in numbers far worse, even on a per capita basis, than in the 1930s. Yet, no one seems to care in the USA, except maybe the families living in their cars under an overpass in, say Tampa, Florida.
Thus, Obama and his team have done precious little to stop home foreclosures, because to do so, for one, would include bringing jobs back form overseas. He promised to “put Americans back to work” and has failed on this issue too (Failure #3). *****Why can’t he bring back jobs that paid $15.00 to $30.00 an hour, from countries that received all these US labor jobs and pay .14 cents to .52 cents an hour in wages? The question answers itself. BUT Obama never even tried to halt the tax exemptions that give corporations a TAX BREAK for moving jobs overseas (F-4). *****Honestly, what kind of government would give companies a tax break for sinking their OWN PEOPLE’S jobs? A government controlled by the owners of the means of production. More proof of Obama’s failures (but only the workers and regular folks would call these failures. After all Obama was mostly elected by Republican money, hence for himself and his cronies, these are seen as successes!) Is that as far as one can ascertain ZERO jobs have moved back from
overseas.(F-5) *****Or, better put, if any have, the number exiting compared to the number coming back to the US must be a ratio exceeding 100,000 to one. A quick peak at Google finds headings like ”Can’t find a job? Move overseas” and “US Firms move abroad to cut taxes” *****
When Barack Obama was in the Illinois State Senate he said “In order to achieve single-payer health insurance all we have to do is have Democrats control the US House, Senate and White House at the same time. When he was elected President, that dream came true. All three areas of the US Government were controlled by “Democrats.” And when it came time to negotiate a better health care package for Americans Obama said “Single Payer Health Care is a non starter,” meaning he wouldn’t even fight for it. This means that he not only ran for office KNOWING he wasn’t going to change anything, but he also openly lied about where his positions were on dozens, nay hundreds of areas. (Failure # 6 through 600, but just #6 for our talk). *****
Failure number (are we up to seven now?) Obama was the ONLY African American to edit the Harvard Law Review. He was a top constitutional scholar. Yet, with all the constitution-busting aspects of Patriot Act One and Patriot Act Two, Obama never once brought up the idea of rescinding those laws, nor did he even offer any amendments to those laws based on, well, the constitution itself. The most egregious boo-boo? Abolishment of Habeas Corpus…this concept, in which anyone who is being arrested must, at the time of arrest, be TOLD WHY they are being arrested, disappeared when the Patriot Act passed under Bush 2. This precedent has been in western law since The Magna Carta was Presented to King John in England in 1215. Obama never tried to regain this vital concept, even though it is protected four different times in the constitution. Now a President and his minions can arrest anyone they want, and not tell them why. Furthermore, the person being arrested can be categorized an enemy combatant without judicial review. That means the detainee can then be moved offshore (a navy ship one mile out to sea is far enough) tried without access to defense, found guilty of any crime they care to dream up, and be executed and dumped in the ocean. Obama never changed this.
Failure is too kind a word for Obama’s dismal record in many cases:
The Obama cabinet was stacked with Hawks right from the beginning: Robert Gates continuing as Defense Secretary even after Bush/Rumsfeld/Wolfowitz were gone, Joseph Biden the most hawkish pro military-spending member of the Senate, when he was Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, and Hillary Clinton, the Secretary of State who never once voted against a President Bush, Jr. request for more funding for the illegal and unwise wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. (His initial Cabinet equals F-8) *****
Not only did he fail to rescind Patriot Act One and Two, Obama never once brought up the concept of trying to re-enact ANY of the 186 environmental laws that were scrapped under Bush Two. (F-9). *****He also pushed hard for the Keystone Pipeline, an environmental disaster (F-10) *****just in the building part, no less the carbons emitted once finished! He also favors fracking to discover more natural gas deposits (F-11) *****regardless of the horrid effects this has on the water supply, etcetera.
His approval rating is below 50%, but not surprisingly has dipped from 85% to under 50% among African Americans as well. Why? Perhaps this is because his wholesale pardon of illegal immigrants already in the USA, and inability to have a consistent immigration policy has lowered the value of labor so much, that it has put even menial jobs often done by African Americans in peril due to the fact the illegal immigrants are willing to work for half the minimum wage, or, many times, less than $2.00 an hour, or, 75% less than the minimum wage. This has also caused outright hatred and violence between Latinos and African Americans in many urban settings, notably Los Angeles and in three cities in North Carolina, which is now over 22% Hispanic. The irony is that Hispanics make great neighbors, are fun-loving, generally go to church every Sunday, and are happy, even when sending more than half their meager wages back to their home countries. This follows the pattern of the globalization efforts that have lowered the value of labor world wide.
Minutes after his 2014 State of the Union Address Obama continued to negotiate the Trans-Pacific Partnership. IN his speech he said how much he was going to do for out of work manual laborers in the United States. So let’s look at what the “TPP” does: (F-12)
We, the Ministers and Heads of Delegation for Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the United States, and Vietnam, have just completed a four-day Ministerial meeting in Singapore where we have made substantial progress toward completing the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement.
For all TPP countries, an ambitious, comprehensive and high-standard agreement that achieves the goals established in Honolulu in 2011 is critical for creating jobs and promoting growth, providing opportunity for our citizens and contributing to regional integration and the strengthening of the multilateral trading system.
This is the official opening statement after the Singapore meeting. What it means is yet another “Free Trade” agreement in which developed countries ship off their labor jobs, even service jobs, to lower-wage countries, thus hurting the workers in the United States the most.
Obama is nowhere near a pro-labor President and has done the bidding of the big money on Wall Street, the money, you will recall, that got him past Hillary Clinton way back in 2007/8.
The Trans-Pacific Partnership is among countries, half of which already have a free trade agreement with the USA. In countries with very small GDP per Capita, the USA will find cheaper labor than its own. The government’s own analysis (see web site below) shows
$49,922 per capita GDP in the united states, with TPP partners Chile at only $18,419; Malaysia $16,922; Mexico $15,312: Peru, $10,719 and Vietnam at $3,548 the USA has fashioned an extremely stringent agreement that will open up the USA to goods without Tariffs from countries whose per-hour factory wage are as low as 14 CENTS! (F-13) *****This will surely cause yet another flood of American labor jobs exiting to countries, that will in fact give those countries more wage-slave jobs, (F-14) lose hard-working American jobs, and once again lower the value of labor everywhere. No one or very few climb into the middle-class at 14 or even 52 Cents an hour wages. *****
This also fills the coffers of the top 2% of the world, the “already filthy rich.” (F-15)
*****Note the civil unrest in Greece and Spain, to name just two where people under 25 are facing 50% jobless rates due to work being sent to lower-wage countries from Europe, and Germany’s strict “austerity” demands, in order to keep lending them money. The USA is about to find out how strict our lenders can be, as we owe $17 Trillion + dollars now, and Obama has done NOTHING to bring down the US annual deficit or debt. (F-16) *****Even Clinton did better than that. https://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/row/R42344.pdf
Thus, Obama’s biggest failures: to spread unrest and war in the Middle East, and continuing the use of Drone Warfare, his continued backing of incipient free trade that only benefits the very upper class while decimating his own labor force, his inability to regain vital environmental protection laws, his unyielding support of illegal super-cheap labor within the USA, his failure to overturn the Patriot Acts, *****and tacit approval of the 2010 Citizens United Supreme Court ruling (F-17) that allows corporations to donate unlimited amounts of money to political campaigns ANNONYMOUSLY ranks Obama more God-Awful than Clinton was. Clinton, you will recall managed to start this free trade fiasco rolling with NAFTA, continued it in a massive way with the pushing and signing of GATT 2, which created the World Trade Organization, his 1995 Banking Reform Act, which allowed banks to lend out $30 for every $1 they had in the bank, thus causing the eventual sub-prime mortgage crisis of 2008, and worst of all, his 1995 Welfare Reform Act which began the decimation of support for America’s poor, which have been steadily growing since January 1993, when Bill took office. Prisoners rose from 1.2 million to 2 million under Clinton, and continue to move upward, mostly due to racist “Drug Wars” (F-18) that are little more than massive anti minority wars. *****Hence, Obama has done little or nothing to help African Americans. (F-19). *****
Has Obama done worse things than these? Overall, yes. Clinton killed 35,000 innocent people in Belgrade, while failing to hit the target, Slobodan Milosovic who later died in jail. Obama has killed and unknown number of people in Pakistan (a country Bush’s army never invaded other than by drone), also increasing drone attacks dramatically, and initiating them in at least three other countries (F-20). *****
He’s enraged Russia by backing the rebels against Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad, and added to the death count in Tunisia, Libya and possibly Egypt as well. Egypt receives
$1.3 billion in aid every year, which Obama has continued. His policy in Israel has been mixed and confusing, but has run counter to the US love affair with the blood-thirsty Israelis who generally kill 10 to 20 Palestinians for every one Israeli lost in conflicts. To his credit Obama, through emissaries has played an even hand in this ongoing struggle, which is stunning considering the messes he has created elsewhere in the Middle East.
*****Obama continues the annual Spring folly of war games with the South Korean Army. (F-21) I’m all in favor of being at-the-ready, but these practices could be done ANYWHERE, and need not be done right on the North Korean border. Especially the Naval borderline. Each year these war games are committed right on North Korea’s doorstep, when, in reality, they could be done ANYWHERE in the Pacific, a large ocean. It shouldn’t be a surprise then, that North Korea also practices firing its canon rounds at the same time. The Sinking of the Cheonan, and the bombing of Yeung Pyeung-do should have been ample evidence that continuing the war games on the border of North Korea was simply TOO MUCH of a PROVOCATION. *****
Obama never tried to REDUCE COSTS of health care, by forcing pharmaceutical companies, doctors, hospitals, medical schools, nursing home facilities, surgeons and other healthcare professionals and hospital corporations to lower their prices via the leverage that would have been created with a single-payer system like the ones South Korea, France, England, Germany and Canada have (and many more) (F-22). ***** All he tried to do was to get people who could not afford health insurance to somehow put together the money to buy it. about five million of the over 40 million Americans without health care insurance have bought in. (F-23) They shouldn’t have had to.
That’s 23 failures and two successes. (both electoral). How do such flops get re-elected, when such natural and human disasters, I mean Obama, Bush two, Clinton and Reagan, who have all stunk out loud? Via pure-blooded, old fashioned, very successful propaganda. The failure to investigate and report the facts by 99% of the media in the USA, and its complicity in reporting bold-faced lies has been pointed out by Senator Al Franken in “Lies, and the Lying Liars who tell them” a book now over 10 years old. The research for this book was done by 14 HARVARD graduate students, and it shows that Fox News and many others openly lied and KNEW they were lying at the time. Yet Americans soak the news up as gospel and have become so hoodwinked they are likely to vote for anyone. Wait, they already have! *****
Obama’s largest failure has been to continue and exacerbate Clinton’s immense move of the Democratic Party to the right. The US democracy, with no working watchdog press except on the internet, and no real choices, is a sham. FAILURE 24, the worst one of them all, to date.
PS If Hillary Clinton is the next US President, you can count on the Democratic party turning even further right. As a senator she never once voted against a single thing George Bush II wanted.
Successes and failures of Barack Obama
Success #1, he beat Hillary Clinton in the Primaries before the 2008 US Presidential elections to become the Democrat Party Nominee. He did this with 62% of his campaign funding in the primary stage coming from registered Republicans. He succeeded again in defeating John McCain and his ill-thought-out running mate Sarah Palin. This pick was as if McCain did not want to win. Success #2.
But the pick was not nearly as disturbing as Barack Obama’s pick of Joseph Biden. Why? Because Biden had been the MOST pro-War democrat in the house Foreign Affairs Committee ever. And he led that committee to steer votes in favor of huge military overspending and unwise and unnecessary wars throughout his career.
Failure 1) (F-1)Obama ran on a platform of “We’re Going To Change Washington” and he not only failed to change Washington, in most cases he did not even try, or caved in to Republican demands even when the House, Senate and White house were ALL in Democratic control. How is this possible? Because so many Democrats are owned by the same corporations that own Republicans, for one, and, all but two being millionaires themselves, are inclined to vote for bail-outs for the rich (most of which happened before Obama took office, right at the end of Bush Junior’s reign with Goldman Sachs President / Secretary of the Treasury Henry “Hank” Paulson jamming a bill through congress that handed the richest bankers in the world trillions of dollars [BERNANKE HANDS OUT $16+ TRILLION in ZERO% GIFTS TO BANKS…] http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/08/foreclosure-settlement-fails-mortgage_n_1754018.html) to clean up their own sickeningly bad investment choices that had, in turn, caused a meltdown in the US housing markets to the tune of 10,000 home foreclosures a day…The USA is now experiencing less foreclosures, at “only” 1,400 PER DAY. Mind you the daily foreclosure figures in the USA Depression of the 1930s were nowhere near as high as this six year low for the USA. This amounts to failure number 2.
These are entire families financially ruined in numbers far worse, even on a per capita basis, than in the 1930s. Yet, no one seems to care in the USA, except maybe the families living in their cars under an overpass in, say Tampa, Florida.
Thus, Obama and his team have done precious little to stop home foreclosures, because to do so, for one, would include bringing jobs back from overseas. He promised to “put Americans back to work” and has failed on this issue too (Failure #3). Why can’t he bring back jobs that paid $15.00 to $30.00 an hour, from countries that received all these US labor jobs and pay .14 cents to .52 cents an hour in wages? The question answers itself. BUT Obama never even tried to halt the tax exemptions that give corporations a TAX BREAK for moving jobs overseas (F-4). Honestly, what kind of government would give companies a tax break for sinking their OWN PEOPLE’S jobs? A government controlled by the owners of the means of production. More proof of Obama’s failures (but only the workers and regular folks would call these failures. After all Obama was mostly elected by Republican money, hence for himself and his cronies, these are seen as successes!) Is that as far as one can ascertain ZERO jobs have moved back from
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