Trump and Not Clinton

democrats-republicans

Today, the world woke up to learn that American citizens elected Donald Trump, and not Hillary Clinton, for president .
Given that democrats preferred the war and bomb-like Clinton against Bernie Sanders and republicans (more cleverly) Trump instead of long time, ultra conservative politicians, US citizens had no choice but the lesser evil.
I have to clarify that from my part (in social media and through TWTP) I have supported Sanders, while I stopped any effort after Clinton’s election for democrats’ candidate.
Not all people are that strict though.

While journalists, experts and analysts are trying to decode as much as to predict, world leaders stay numb and disappointed because their “preferred” candidate has not been elected.
They are also probably preparing their plans under the (unexpected?) facts and, at some time, their congratulation messages.
At the same time, people outside not less that inside the US would better be aware that they will suffer the consequences of Trump presidency, instead of Clinton presidency.
As simple as that.

Be careful! Microsoft monitors, tracks, detects and locates you!

I must be living a nightmare!
Being in another country, I tried to reach my two email accounts held with #Microsoft (#hotmail and #outlook).
They have
#blocked me out and they demanded for a code which I had set to receive to the other one of each two blocked accounts. A complete dead-end.
I have been obliged to acknowledge to them my mail address with #yahoo and after eleven (11) interrogations, #personal data, telephone Nr – which I have refused repeatedly to provide to them -, names and email of my contacts, which I didn’t remember anyway, I could only answer the security question which I had set at the opening of the damned account.
The result is that they instruct me to open a new account!!!!
Does anyone know if there is any organization which controls these unethical practices?
Please inform!!
I will denounce them with all my means!!
THIS IS a violation of #civil_rights and the real #terrorism by #Microsoft!
Its history and its unethical practices in various levels is the proof and their monopoly is blackmailing.
That’s their message after my numerous attempts and their dictatorial rejections:
binary_ars
“Your security is important to us
Recently, we received several requests to gain access to …….@hotmail.com [the same was sent for ……@outlook.com]. Unfortunately, we were unable to verify your ownership using the information that was provided. Microsoft takes the security and privacy of our customers very seriously. We are committed to protecting your personal information, and our careful account recovery process is intended to protect you from any possible malicious activity.
Now what?
Because there have been multiple unsuccessful recovery attempts for this account, we recommend at this point that you create a new account. It’s quick and easy, and we have tools to help you import contacts, connect with Facebook, and even receive messages from multiple email accounts.
> Open a new account
With a new account, you’ll be able to use the following services across all of your devices:
Best-in-class email with unlimited storage at lightning speed and serious security.
Stay connected with friends and family, see social updates and chat with Facebook friends, and make ordinary moments memorable with video calls.
Free online storage for thousands of docs and photos, shared your way.
Don’t get locked out again
Once you create a new account, we highly recommend you update your password reset information with a phone number or alternate email address. This will make it easier for you to gain access to your account in the future if you are locked out again.
> Open a new account
 
Thank you
 
Microsoft Support Team
 
Microsoft Corporation
One Microsoft Way
Redmond, WA 98052
USA
 
Account recovery request 210775911 is now closed. Please do not reply to this message. Replies to this message are routed to an unmonitored mailbox.”

Documentary: Lets Make Money by Erwin Wagenhofer (Watch, Think, Act)

Lets-Make-Money-Movie

This time the documentary of Erwin Wagenhofer Lets Make Money caught my attention.
It presents the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth about money “creation”, stock and effect upon ordinary people’s lives over time and worldwide.

At the same time, it is shocking and chilling although all of us have already realized the consequences upon our lives.
 Nevertheless, it offers (or it would hopefully do) some kind of awareness -even to the most keen supporters of liberalism, and of its evolved and harsher version, neoliberalism- on the financial, social and political events that take place because of banks, World Bank in particular, the whole financial/ economic system together with  the elite  (1%), all of them against the people (99%).

Image is a powerful tool but equally is speech and words (logos in Greek).
 The deeper meaning is that, if someone is an “average citizen” in one of the dominant (or of THE dominant) countries, is convicted to be a “little man” and to bear the corresponding consequences, according to Hermann Scheer. (at about 1:46:00)

One important reason for this posting is also relative to the article about Panama Papers.
The documentary is, among others, a proof that all tax heavens, capitalism, poverty and exploitation are existing and are globally known.
It also proves that corruption is a lot bigger, deeper and higher than presented by the Media.
Capitalism is the corruption and is lethal because it constitutes the core and the essence of international institutions which affect the fates of countries and people.
It is the whole system which is corrupted and not just some individuals, even if these are prime ministers and presidents.
The long hand of propaganda and of “consensus manufacturing”, aims to smear some (or many, it doesn’t make any difference) in order to disorient social resentment and opinion.
 Yet, there are people -humans- all over the world who think that their “fate” is to be poor and exploitable.
Curiously enough, they live in “prosperous” and “civilized” western countries.

 Can’t wish “enjoy”.
It is more appropriate to write:  THINK and ACT.

http://www.veoh.com/watch/v22189967GR4CQTPZ?h1=Let%27s+Make+Money+-+english+subs

 

PS: As my research for the whole version with English subtitles proved a bit tricky, I quote here one extra link  … just in case! http://www.veoh.com/watch/v22189967GR4CQTPZ
These are the only whole versions with English subtitles I found and they both work in my computer systems.
Maybe they are the same, maybe not.

 In case you can’t open one or both of them (cause of compatibility or software problems) here is the first part in YouTube.
If problems occur, do not hesitate to contact in order to search together for a solution.

The Scandalous Scandals And The Not So Revelations

CorruptionNew2

Ah, look at all the corrupted people…
Rephrasing The Beatles, we can express one of the most real…realities of our world. Corruption.

Revelations and Outlaws

It is WikiLeaks, the founder of which (Julian Assange) is in the asylum of Ecuadorian embassy in London to avoid extradition to Sweden and from there to US because he published secret documents which are secret because they involve worldwide “sins” i.e. crimes and corruption and vicious policies and wars and invasions and murders and….
It is Edward Snowden who is in (kind of) asylum in Russia to avoid arrest because he leaked information concerning global surveillance programs of NSA and other non “public benefit organisations” of many “civilized” countries, against all the people of the earth. 
There are also many whistle-blowers who served society and the people and now they are in prison. (Here I don’t put a link to Wikipedia as the article for the term is at least despicable and apparently written by “mandated” writers who aim to misinform naïve people. In any case, “its neutrality is disputed” according to included notice).
These whistle-blowers are in prison because they revealed classified documents which concern all of us but none (of us) is allowed to see them.

Semi-Legitimate Disclosures

On 2nd of April, WikiLeaks published a teleconference between two IMF officials talking about Greek debt.
Any elementary informed person knows the economic condition of Greek people during the last six years and any elementary thinking person should know that in every country where IMF is involved (i.e. lends) also imposes austerity, impoverishes people and destroys the economies. They are institutionalized economic assassins (see video). 
Christine Lagarde never denied the leaked conversation which is revealing plans about default and financial asphyxiation of Greece, as they did last summer.
She only complained about “unsafe” communications, said that these are “nonsense” and more or less accused Greek agencies for the tapping.
In the meantime, Greeks suffer and the country is in danger, in many respects.

The next day, on 3rd April, another leak exposed scandals, but this time through legitimate investigative journalism.
As a newsletter member of ICIJ, I received an email which announced the journalistic success of #PanamaPapers.
Oh, how I admired those fearless journalists with the series of successful revelations!
– LuxLeaks, another tax evasion scandal involving Luxembourg and its then PM, guess who, Jean-Claude Juncker.
(Have you ever heard anything about the scandal since then? Probably not). 
– Evicted and Abandoned – World Bank, is about the promises for development of poor countries and communities who are forced by World Bank to abandon their lands.
(Have you ever heard anything about the inhuman, typically neoliberal, practices of the “respectable” organisation? Sure you haven’t!).

Swiss Leaks, Australian Mining in Africa and many other interesting and informative revelations.
(Have you ever read anything about them? I doubt and it’s not your fault.)

Targeted Leaks

The biggest part of the email about Panama Papers writes:
A new investigation by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, the German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung and more than 100 other news organizations around the globe, reveals the offshore links of some of the planet’s most prominent people.

Read this investigation

In terms of size, it is likely the biggest leak of inside information in history – more than 11.5 million documents – and it is equally likely to be one of the most explosive in the nature of its revelations.

The leak exposes the offshore holdings of 12 current and former world leaders and reveals how associates of Russian President Vladimir Putin secretly shuffled as much as $2 billion through banks and shadow companies.

The files also provide details of the hidden financial dealings of 128 other politicians and public officials around the world and show how a global industry of law firms and big banks sells financial secrecy to fraudsters and drug traffickers as well as billionaires, celebrities and sports stars.

Is the email a bit peculiar? Yes it is! Of all the 11.5 million documents, the most important is that of Putin while the other information appear is a neutral and anonymous way.

And the very next day (Monday), the whole world is writing and talking about it.
Scandal! Corruption! Our taxes! Their taxes! Tax heavens! Rich and famous!
Seriously?!
I am still asking myself what’s the difference between this specific revelation of ICIJ and all the above of other publishers and whistle blowers.
And yes, I find one or two.
All these “bad” persons and organizations, Mossack Fonseca’s customers, are targeted for more or less obvious reasons.
– Well, Putin is the easy part, OK?
– Ilham Aliyev, President of Azerbaijan, is equally easy. Export of natural gas to Europe, conflicts with Armenia for Nagorno-Karabakh, support from Turkey’s Erdogan.
– Bashar Assad (who the “impartial and objective” journalists call dictator in their article, such as US and their allies do).
No news here. If there weren’t anyone else in the lists, there would be Assad!
(No, Erdogan in not, because he spent all the money to build his palace which by the way, is invisible to Media, contrary to those of Muamar Gadhafi, Nicolae Ceausescu, Viktor Yanukovych etc).
– Xi Jinping. Words are very unnecessary… (to remember another song)
– Lionel Messi (top football player). Why? Why this good guy?
Because all the people have to pay their taxes, no matter how popular they are. So, don’t feel underprivileged you little man. They all pay at some point. (Lie).
– Michel Platini. Some news! Why didn’t anyone searched his assets after the FIFA scandal revelations and persecutions?
– David Cameron or his dad (?). The usually obedient (bell)-boy became a little naughty recently and is going to allow a referendum which of course he already has and will even more use in favour of big corporations and banks.
– Yes, banks.  What’s your problem? They are European, not American. Don’t worry.
Want more?
– Sigmundur David Gunnlaugsson, Prime Minister of Iceland.
Did you know that a year ago Iceland dropped EU membership bid?
Which means that the government and the country rejected the idea to become member of the so-called Union (the organisation which allows no sovereignty, encourages fascism, racism and xenophobia and which is Germany’s protectorate).
The consequent measures would be against country’s interests and in the meantime, “crisis” had already made several countries suffer from austerity.
So, “thanks but no thanks” from Iceland.

Not a bad idea from the part of Iceland, although it proved costly and -let me guess- not only for the PM. Who will replace him? Will he/she be more favorable towards membership?

Need more? 11.5 million financial and legal records are available according to publishers.
All the above though and the timing of the disclosures have a strong “smell” of extermination of demonization of specific persons, or at least and no matter their noble intentions, they are going to be used in this way.
And not to  disregard that they form both a decoy and an excellent bargaining chip.
For which purpose? We’ll see in the near future I believe.

It is necessary to underline here that I don’t imply that the scandals and revelations are not existing or that they are not real.
What I say is that in the same way that terrorists are “untraceable” (while all of ordinary users of internet are monitored), the “sins” of all those entities were well known.
Timing, range, Media and targeting make all the difference.

Selective Monitoring and Exposing

While x terabytes of data are exposed and global surveillance is a common practice,
while Erdogan punishes tweeter, youtube and journalism itself,
while all internet activity is monitored, (yes, ours)
and all fancy phones are tracked,
there is ONLY ONE who/which cannot be located and identified: Terrorists and terrorism. Specifically before they kill, destroy, blow up, bomb, suicide.
Occasionally they are found and arrested after the job is done.
 
But again and after all I wonder:
What makes revelations either illegal and criminal or legitimate and democratic?

Freedom of information activists (we could say), like Chelsea (former Bradley) Manning and others are in prison or in exile.
Governments and organisations supposedly “care and protect” people’s interests.
No, they don’t.
Journalism is allegedly the first and the last advocate of freedom of speech, expression and information and its  functionaries, journalists, are defenders of the truth. (Am I romantic?)

However, systemic press and corporate media are the strongest propaganda weapons.

Where, which, who, when and why (the 5 W’s of journalists) meet and ask the power and the authority as much as those playing and spreading games.
What happens when behind each news, information and revelation may be hiding an ultimate goal which ordinary people cannot always interpret or decipher -and why should they?

So, every information may be genuine and at the same time serve deceptive goals.
No need to be afraid but also must not be naive. Just be suspicious and open-minded.

The Inhuman Version

fence refugees

Let’s say that a random person leaves its country due to war, hunger, economic reasons or even because the status which the West established in this country proved no freedom, no democracy, no future at all.
According to EU’s terminology this person could be called either refugee or migrant.
Refugees are these whose country is ruined by the alliances which didn’t approve the country’s regime (e.g. Libya, Afghanistan, Iraq).
Migrants are these who are either in danger which they cannot show (because their countries have been “saved”) or are starving and are risking to die if they remain in their countries (e.g. sub-Saharan Africa).
All these hundreds of thousands of persons, people, souls, human beings try to reach Europe and more specifically EU which is said to be better than their own motherland.

The outcome of this account is that:
Millions are forced to live in appalling conditions
Thousands are drowned (many of them are children)
About 10000 thousand children who entered EU are now missing
Hundreds are killed by border guards
Thousands are marginalized
Millions are so weak that they cannot confront their real tyrants.

However, Austria, Skopje, Hungary and other drenched in hate and bigotry nations, think that the human right of living with dignity belongs to them.
Quite the opposite.

They are the ones whose racism, intolerance and xenophobia the world wouldn’t miss at all.
They are the ones who fall short of respect and have a surplus of despotism and audacity. 
And if the world had limited space, they are the ones without whom ordinary people could afford to live.

In Greece, a proverb says roughly: Away from our ass and let it get wherever it wants.
It means that one wishes that unpleasant, uncomfortable, painful or nasty situations may harm anyone, as long as they don’t reach him.

That is the mentality, morality and ethics of the governments (and the people?) of these states.

Actually, no disaster would be a … worthy reward for such narrow minds and souls, but we all have to live on the same planet.

 

The Multifaceted Russian-Turkish Conflict

russian pilots
© Sputnik/ Alexander Vilf Relatives of Russian Su-24 Pilot ‘Refuse to Believe He is Dead’

The following article was written on 27th November, therefore some of the details might have changed.
Wherever possible, I have made adjustments.

Just a few days after Turkish F-16s shot down the Russian Su-24 aircraft on 24th November, tens of scenarios and analysis have been published and broadcasted and they all have a common factor:

They accept that the players after the incident are much more than two and that a new chapter in foreign policies has opened.
The time perspective of the event itself will reveal the whole spectrum of participants, those concerned and the stakeholders, the number of who appears to be growing.
In the foreground, there are Russia, its president Vladimir Putin and their recent involvement in the war against ISIS in Syria on one hand, and the NATO member Turkey of Recep Tayyip Erdogan, on the other.
Inevitably, the European Union and its two most powerful countries, Germany and France, become parts of this equation to a more or less obvious extent. They are both NATO members and that’s a role they have to support.
France’s wound of 13th November is fresh as much as are its president’s Francois Hollande declared intentions (and actions) to intensify war against terrorism of ISIS by cooperating with allies and not-so-allies, as is Russia.
To this end, all predictions and signs favored a joint effort with Russia and Mr Hollande’s meet with US president Barack Obama included smoothing of edges and bridging the gap between US and Russia in the name of the common cause.
An aspect of these policies is that Russia’s decision to operate against ISIS in Syria has been vindicated and it can be seen as a win of Vladimir Putin, whose country is blacklisted by NATO, USA and EU, i.e. from the West.
Even if NATO members defended the “right of Turkey to protect its land”, they didn’t provide any further support through public statements.
Therefore Erdogan, who at first seemed to have deterred the approach between West and Russia and the reinforcement of powers against ISIS willingly or not, failed to promote his country as a decisive regional factor.
Irrespective of Turkish president’s instability, as German Vice-Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel said on 25th November, and “exuberance”, by the defensive-aggressive movement of shooting a NATO non-friendly country’s war craft, Turkey repeated its practice of establishing de facto conditions (Cyprus occupation is one of them) and attempted to demonstrate and “tout” its role and status of NATO member.
Also, the overt and straight support to Turkmens could be interpreted as a “declaration” implying the “Kurdish factor”, i.e. Turkish friendly Vs Turkish hostile populations.
Only a short time before, Erdogan had highlighted Turkey’s ambitions to become member of EU and used the refugee crisis and the “need” of EU to ensure Turkish cooperation, in order to extract a promising result.
The obvious benefits though have been a few and so far limited to a financing from EU.
[During the conference of 29Nov., EU promised 3 billion euros which could, and they possibly will, increase and visa regime “rearrangements” and everyone turned a blind eye to the flagrant human rights violations. But then again, that’s the EU …]
So, Turkey decided to use the “NATO card”.

We have to remember that both Angela Merkel and Jean-Claude Junker “suggested” common Greek and Turkish rescue operations in Greek territorial waters.
When Greece rejected such type of Turkish involvement, Ms Merkel underlined that “both countries are NATO members”, as if it should be understood that the membership would allow common territorial grounds or that insured territorial security -for Greece.

It also goes without saying that inside his country Erdogan emphasizes in every possible way the factors of security and stability and projects the image of a strong, powerful, competent and determined leader.
This image covers and entertains impressions and reactions against his controversial “relationship” with civil rights and has even supported his party AKP in recent parliamentary elections.
Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu has a more moderate approach and made efforts to express more peaceful intentions after the downing of the Russian jet.
Turkish and Russian presidents have several similarities as leading personalities and some observers would find similarities even in governing.
It’s their differences, though, which make the “difference” together with the roles of their countries with regard to international relations.

Within the recent picture, Syria remains the hot spot and the threat of ISIS is the global factor.
President Hollande had to suffer a second hit of French capital and citizens, in order to consider a plan of joint action, not restricted inside NATO frame and interests, but comprising several regional powers.
In this frame, while Vladimir Putin has taken a positive initiative (if war can ever be considered positive), Recep Tayyip Erdogan appears as the negative factor.
[The disclosures (within the country and after Putin had spoken about it publicly) of Turkish role and involvement in oil smuggling, triggered Erdogan’s beloved practice of overt censorship.]

The downing of jet incident brought to the forefront the many and “artfully” non-promoted by western media, dark spots of Turkish involvement and role in Syria crisis.
The day-after has brought Russian resolutions about sanctions to Turkey -and Russians know a lot about sanctions as imposed on them by USA allies.

Although some analysts have spoken about a WWIII, on one hand this seems to be happening now with all these open fronts all over the world, and on the other it is highly undesirable even by US, the “usual suspect” of initiating wars and invasions and at least during Obama’s administration.

The nightmare of a generalized regional war could involve:
Lebanon, a tormented country which recently has (silently) suffered major inland hits by terrorism,
Egypt, a country which is revising, rebuilding and expanding its foreign relations,
Jordan, because of proximity and as the hosting country of thousand of refugees,
and probably Iran as a Russian and Syria ally but also against ISIS.
It could also involve Israel, its phobic and pro war policies and, worst case scenario, its nuclear weapons.

The news “run”, tension intensifies or discharges sequentially, anything written could be soon outdated and the so called “diplomatic thriller” between Russia and Turkey continues. with Erdogan’s invitation to Putin to a meeting during World Climate Conference (COP21) in Paris.

[It is imperative to remember, although Davutoglu’s statements and attitude leaved no chance to forget, that Turkish diplomacy is among the (two in my opinion) most insolent of the world.
Another feature of their policies is (again among the two) to create «guilt complexes» to their interlocutors.
The combination of antidemocratic practices, together with the assassination of Tahir Elci, pro-Kurdish activist, made EU-Turkish approach more bitter.
]

At this point of time we can conclude that although hopes and fears are significant yet invisible and neglected factors of foreign policies, prudence, sangfroid and sobriety combined with care about people, are better consultants and should prevail for all participants, at last.

 

Paris Attacks and Some First Thoughts

ParisAttackBadge

It was just yesterday when a posting has been shared here about actions which would take place in Paris alongside COP21 (the summit of UN for the climate).
During the night, Paris has become victim of murderers fascists terrorists and human lives have been lost in Europe as well -apart from almost all around the world.
It is extremely early to reach “safe” (what a word!) conclusions but I believe there are a few points worth mentioning.
It is understood that the attacks have created a status which several sources have chosen to name «European 11 September».
This name-giving is an omen by itself.
At the same time, France closed its borders -or intensified border controls, other sources say- and was declared a state of emergency, which are both provided and expected measures under extreme situations.
“French police ban all public demonstrations in Paris region until Thursday”, according to AFP, while the army has been mobilised inside Paris.
Every guest/speaker at TV news shows relate, one way or another, terrorism with refugees.
Unavoidable to repeat here the opinion about the terrorism from which refugees are fleeing (see Fleeing Morality and Refugees), which is induced by “regime change” interests/obsessions of the West/ USA/ NATO and inflicted wars in Middle East and Northern Africa.

The correspondent of a Greek TV channel in France, among others, informed us that President Hollande had already planned measures of border controls for the people who would arrive to participate to marches, ahead of COP21.

Conclusively, a certain type of measures would and shall obstruct or block peaceful protesters.
Therefore, terrorists have led to the same type of measures aimed anyway for civilians.
Therefore, people have been killed and shot, human lives have been lost, persons have died and the result is that restricting civil actions is appropriate means for containing danger.

Attacks both in Ankara, Turkey last October and Paris last night, aimed normal civil functions and activities.
(Turkey has conveniently blamed Curds -as usual- but that’s another form of obsession/perversion.)

What has been attacked in both recent cases is the everyday life, the “normality”, the freedom of ordinary people to have ordinary activities.
Fear destroys everything acting either like tsunami or cancer.

I repeat that it’s very early to anticipate or predict what the near (and far) future is carrying.
Signs give a glimpse.

Incidentally, a few days ago, passing additional control at Paris airport, near an American woman, I commented that “9/11 has destroyed us all” and she responded that it is inconvenient indeed but “it is for our safety”.
For “safety” (but not privacy or dignity) reasons I know now what she carried inside her bag and the next person waiting knows what I carried in mine.

A Greek song repeats the motto “for my own good” while describing the hardship and suffering incurred and imposed for this reason.
For who’s “good” rights and liberties will be limited?
For who’s “good” Muslim European citizens or migrants or refugees are likely to suffer even more discrimination, racism, bigotry, xenophobia and atrocities (as has already happened) by “europeans”? 

We stand by Paris people in any way we can and we keep our minds and hearts clear of fear.

DieselGate and its shadows

dieselgate greenpease

It’s been more than a while since my last posting here, due to a combination of lack of time, writer’s block, rich (to an intolerable level) actuality and procrastination.
However, in the meantime I’ve shared tens of articles in TWTP page in FB  and I urge you (because it is worthwhile) to follow the site there, if you also want to read a rich and essential selection of articles, news and analysis.

This morning, TV presented the recent and notorious #dieselgate, the attempt of the industrial giant, Volkswagen, to mislead and deceive consumers and authorities about the real emissions of their cars.
Around the scandal, some of the facts which have material, ethical and even political levels are:

Consumers buy low-emissions cars, either because of financial reasons or, hopefully, because they want to contribute in lower emissions, less CO2, saving the planet, i.e. environmental awareness.
They have been fooled and betrayed and in their turn and unwillingly, they betrayed the cause.

States and authorities, very unwillingly, struggle to match profits of industries with laws about the emissions. For this reason they have set standards. They have been defrauded.

Environmental groups and organizations invest all their lame (not by their own fault) influence and contribution to the cause of saving the planet to be defeated, like many other fights, in the name of profit. They have been mocked and disregarded and their hardly achieved victories have been “zeroed”.

It is considered highly probable that Germany itself is under pressure (blackmail) from USA to push/force/impose consent inside EU legislative bodies and member states to sign the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), the well-known threat on economy, civil rights, public health and, eventually, democracy in EU.

The old and “traditional” industrial giant of Germany is said to be in “existential” danger because of the scandal, they have lost their credibility, their stocks fell and the factory could stop working and producing. Skilled workers are threatened with unemployment and even worse, into current economic climate.
The giant will survive, I could bet much on that, the, real responsible or scapegoat, CEO will not … starve but workers will suffer psychological blackmail to “save their jobs” by accepting cut of their wages and even “limited and targeted” dismissals.
What is ironic if not tragic here is that the workers inevitably connect their lives with the industry, the cheating, unlawful, inhumane organism which nevertheless has giant profits.
The need for work could drive any worker and employee to disregard one’s consciousness, views or ideals. After all, that’s the ultimate role and purpose of (manufactured) unemployment within EU and wherever neo-liberalism is ruling and governing.

So, while environmentalists protest outside Volkswagen, workers and residents of Wolfsburg are terrified by the ominous prospects for their place, their works or their businesses.

A similar situation applies at Skouries, Chalkidiki, Greece, where the gold mining has disastrous effects on environment but the workers (think that) they defend their jobs but unwillingly they fight in favor of the interests of the Canadian company and against their children’s future.

Consciousness vs. Living
People vs. Corporate
Ethics vs. Matter
Climate vs. Fraud
Truth vs. Lies
Earth vs. Fossil fuels
Environment vs. Profits

… and the winner is …

who or whatever we, all the people, decide.

Which are your views??

PS:
A few days after posting this article, revelations show that European Commission knew and covered the fraud.

The Greek Thriller

Humanite 6.7.2015

It is understood that referendum of 5th July in Greece and the next, ongoing round of negotiations with European institutions, have gained the lion’s share of interest for two weeks now.
Although nothing solid has been achieved until this time, talks in Euro Group continue, a summit meeting of 19 countries of Eurozone is expected during the day (Sunday 12.7.2015) and the summit of 28 EU member-states is said to be cancelled.
That last (cancellation) can be interpreted as a sign that Grexit is not an option anymore.
Meanwhile, the German “idea” of a temporary Grexit (for five years) has been characterized ridiculous by several EU members.
At the same time, Finland’s minister of economy has come up with a decision from his country to negotiate nothing but an exit of Greece.

It is certain that there is no easy or painless solution for the Greek people (a relative article in The Conversation here) , 61, 3% of whom voted NO and showed that they are fed up with and determined to resist austerity, which Noam Chomsky considers a Class War.
On the other hand, it has become common knowledge that EU (which is quite different thing or notion from Europe) is rotting because of its political, structural, ideological and social problem caused by strict neo-liberal policies.
The decay offers way to “euro-skepticism” which, unfortunately, is supported by extreme right wing nationalists and racists.
If there is a “healthy” solution to EU’s problems it is certain that it cannot be induced and launched by misanthropes (an interesting article about the notion by TeleSur here) of any kind (like Christian-democrats of Germany or fascists in France, Greece, Denmark, Finland etc.)
Although that it is unfounded and kind of racist to attribute behavioral properties to entities such as nations, the same way that Greeks have been repeatedly accused of not working much (laziness), the “hard working” Germans have been historically proved as obsessed to impose their (sour) way of narrow-thinking, living, ruling or working to other states – either by wars or by financial ruling and deprivation.

On the other hand, other European leaders (when they manage to extricate from German “rules”), they support Greece on an ethical, diplomatic or political level.
This is the case of France, even if Francois Hollande is just trying to show his own and his country’s political importance within EU and to prove wrong whoever claims that he appears more as a Merkel’s follower than a strong politician.
European people from their part, have never stopped to support Greece both as a “cause” and as a reflection of their own future.
Sadly, the word solidarity has become the quinessence of hipocricy of EU institutions and a testament to that is the try of european officials to stop IMF’s report which says that Greek debt is not viable and that is should be reduced or restructured.

It is worth wondering if Greece would have recovered by now from a default five years ago.
It is certain though that they have not recovered, quite the opposite, with austerity measures, with huge loans to banks and not to the people or to development and with authoritarian policies of EU and IMF.

While Greek “thriller” is underway, the world is spinning and life goes on, hopefully,  although this is not the case everywhere.
So, hopefully, we shall be back with a review of the week.

Thoughts on Greek Referendum

GReferendum

On Sunday 5th July, Greeks will vote in a referendum. They will have to vote Yes or No, as it is the case for any referendum.
The subject is the whole set of proposals made by “institutions” (i.e. EU, ECB and IMF, the lenders) to Greek government.
Here are some thoughts on the overall picture:

– The proposals-terms set by the institutions are the “product” of five month-long negotiations with Greek officials. During these negotiations the Greek government has changed several times their own proposals and counter-proposals. Nevertheless, they have insisted, at least, in refusing measures on cuts and reductions of pensions and on further deregulation of labor rights.
– Amendments on Greek proposals have led to an indirect acceptance of several measures of austerity which initially had been rejected.
– After each retract and reviewed proposals of Greek government, the lenders have either rejected them or have answered with tougher demands.
– Sy.Riz.A (Coalition of Radical Left), the main governmental party, is pro-European and advocates reforms inside EU for the benefit of the people, while it claims that EU has substantially deviated from its founding principles.
– Although named radical and consisting of moderate lefts (even social-democrats) as well as communists, Syriza stands for parliamentary (bourgeois) democracy with left principles.
– Greek government has been obliged by circumstances (pressure from lenders) to leave apart its elections program such as: Raise of minimum wage, more fair distribution of wealth as well as burdens, abolish of charges imposed on poor and middle class, tackle of humanitarian crisis, fight against corruption and tax avoidance, respect of labor rights etc.
– Internal opposition has repeatedly blamed government for not applying their program and for having lied to the people. Opposition implies that it is not possible to materialize such principles and promises because they oppose to lenders’ demands which promote development (as perceived with neo-liberal terms).
– Expanding requirements of lenders are in fact consistent and representative of neo-liberal EU and IMF’s principles.
– Lenders also press for privatizations of state property, which previous governments have partly executed in most cases under pressure and therefore without sufficient programming and with little or no profit.
– Lenders’ more recent demands (among others) include reduction of defense spending, at the same time when both EU and NATO manufacture additional “threat” from North (FYROM – article TWTP) apart from the “traditional” Eastern and in the middle of  several west induced turbulence in the area of eastern Mediterranean and Middle East.
– Although reluctantly and in contradiction with party’s principles, Mr. Tsipras’ government has showed its willingness to reach an agreement and has accepted to continue privatizations, to keep contributions through taxes (even on law incomes) and to increase VAT rates.
– Greek citizens appear to support country’s staying inside EU and euro zone and a strong propaganda is exercised by the Media and by conservative circles to this direction.
– Greeks are also tired after five years of austerity, so-called negotiations which have always led to dead ends and more cruel measures in return of receiving loan installments.
– Greek people have suffered a lot (to the limits of exhaustion) and the vast majority of middle and poor class experiences a severe degradation of life quality.
– Any production process and consuming (apart from basic necessities) has stopped and the one remaining productive sector of tourism will be mutilated if increased VAT would be imposed. Even banks’ only service provided to consumers is accepting deposits and sending funds abroad when at the same time they receive expensive capital from ELA.
– Even faint attempts of the government to cooperate with other countries such as Russia (well, especially Russia), has met hostility from EU and West in general.
– At the same time, lack of real negotiations of previous governments together with punitive austerity policies and declarations from the part of the lenders has created a sense of humiliation.
– The main request of elections on 25th January which elected Syriza has been the discharge from the terms-measures of memoranda.
– Since then, all negotiations proved fruitless initially because Greece requested change of policies, suggested less recession and claimed sovereignty.
– In the meantime, almost any attempt of government to rule inside the country and the parliament has been rejected by the lenders. In fact, lenders blackmailed and argued that laws against their will would be considered as “unilateral actions” and would lead to failing of negotiations and funding refusal.
– They have also rejected or discouraged any negotiation concerning reduction of the non viable debt.

– From their part, lenders have exercised stronger pressure which a progressive government could not accept (as previous governments of liberal ideology did).
– After five months, after strong contradictions inside Syriza and from Greek people, after extended propaganda and cause of fear by the Media and following a repetitive undermining of negotiations by the lenders, Greek Prime Minister and the Greek government decided a referendum. Referendum will call Greeks to say Yes or No to certain proposals of lenders which concern reforms, debt viability and financing needs of the country.
– During parliamentary voting on referendum, Communist Party of Greece has submitted a proposal which suggests that the Greek citizens should vote Yes or No both to lenders’ and to government’s proposals and to releasing from EU. They say that government’s proposals are in fact a new memorandum and imply recession and measures against the people.
– Right wing, on the other side, claim that the question at stake consists decision on staying or exiting from EU and euro-zone, although government has made clear that the meaning is anything but that.
– If presidium of Parliament had accept the proposal of Communist Party, any ambiguity (manufactured by the Media and the conservative opposition) would be clarified and people would also decide on government’s measures.

– Mr. Tsipras’ government and party envision reforms inside EU and targets to empower movements and parties born by the wave of massive discontent in south-European countries due to inequalities and measures of austerity.
– While parliamentary and political processes are taking place inside Greece, while people face a major decision and while they are going to exercise an important democratic right, “institutions” continue to blackmail with indirect threats, with ambiguous statements and with deprivation of banks’ liquidity, causing reasonable fears to Greek people.
– It is useful to remind here that Greeks, unlike other nations, have never decided themselves about Greece’s participation in EU or euro-zone.

As a conclusion, if lenders had made half of Greek government’s retreats and compromises, a decent and mutually beneficial agreement could have been achieved.
Now, it’s up to the people to consider and decide on their future, with the expectation and the belief that by empowering their government new opportunities will emerge for their country.

Also published in Reader Supported News

The Many Faces of Racism Worldwide

Charleston

Two distinctive facts took place the last days. One peaceful and democratic, such as elections in Denmark, on Thursday and a violent, such as the killing of nine people in a church of Charleston, South Carolina, USA. Regardless of the distance and their difference in nature, the two events have common characteristics and each of them underlines the existing problems of racism, xenophobia and anti-immigration in both sides of the Atlantic Ocean.

European Face

In Denmark, the Danish People’s Party (DF or DPP), a traditionally populist, far-right party that focuses on immigration and social issues is now the second largest in the country and is going to back the coalition of the center-right bloc.
“Danish voters ousted Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt in an election on Thursday and handed power to an opposition centre-right alliance including huge gains for a eurosceptic, anti-immigrant party”, according to Reuters while teleSUR reports: “Anti-immigration and Euroscepticism triumphed in the Thursday elections, as far right and liberal parties were voted in to replace country’s first female prime minister. Denmark’s center-right bloc secured 90 seats in Parliament, out of a total 179, with liberal opposition leader Lars Lokke Rasmussen to take-on the position of prime minister. The backing from the far right party Danish Peoples’ Party (DF), which secured second place in elections Thursday, gives the coalition a majority”.
“The far-right Danish People’s party (DPP) triumphed in the European elections, winning Denmark’s biggest share of the vote as EU-sceptic parties from across the Nordic countries gained further ground in the European parliament”, notes The Guardian.

According to Reuters again: “The party has already managed to set the agenda on some issues without being in government – mainstream parties across the political aisle talked about curbing immigration, following its lead, and DF won an important concession from centre-right parties on its stance on the European Union. Just before the election, the centre-right parties agreed to support British Prime Minister David Cameron’s bid to reform the EU. DF also wants to go further and call an in-or-out referendum on EU membership for Denmark.”

In Europe and inside EU, anti-immigrant parties have gained ground.
“Finland’s anti-immigration Finns party – previously known as the True Finns – increased its number of MEPs to two, but its share of the vote (13%) didn’t match its success in the last national election when it won 19%.” (The Guardian)
In UK elections of early May, the anti-European Union UK Independence Party took 12.6 %, although David Cameron is conservative and eurosceptic enough to announce plans for banning free speech as a form of new counter-extremism laws to tackle terrorism. New laws were due to be introduced in parliament when it would re-open at the end of May, according to The Conversation.

Denmark and UK are the two countries “legally exempt from joining the euro zone unless their governments decide otherwise, either by parliamentary vote or referendum, while the Swedish people turned down euro adoption in a 2003 referendum and since then the country has intentionally avoided fulfilling the adoption requirements by not joining European Exchange Rate Mechanism (ERM II), which is voluntary”. (Wikipedia)
Greece is not an exemption to this recent “rule” of raising racism. The ultra nationalist, fascist, neo-nazi and (therefore) anti-immigrant and xenophobic party “golden dawn” has 17 of 300 seats of the Parliament and 3 in the EP. (Wikipedia)
Neither is France, with their far-right National Front of Le Pen family, which has boosted its power at the municipal elections. I
n addition, “NF will spearhead a new far-right political bloc in the European Parliament, a long-delayed move that will boost the funding and influence of anti-immigrant and anti-European Union voices in the legislature. The new group, called “Europe of Nations and of Freedoms,” brings together 36 lawmakers from seven different countries. It will give a higher profile to parties that have been marginalized in Brussels, amid close cooperation among the three main party groups since European-wide elections in May 2014”, reports The Wall Street Journal.

American Face

On the other hand, in USA, the long history of racism seems to revive – if it ever ended.
Killings of African-American citizens by the police are proved to be more a social than an “inside” problem.
Last Wednesday, Dylann Roof, a young white man has shot nine people inside a church of the black community in Charleston. Roof confessed, he has been arrested and is charged with hate crimes and possession of guns.
“Roof’s crime cannot be divorced from the ideology of white supremacy which long animated his state nor from its potent symbol—the Confederate flag”, notes Ta-Nehisi Coates in the The Atlantic.
Although the Confederate flag is presented as a “heritage” symbol by its defenders, the not-so-hidden symbolism remains white supremacy. A symbol asks for action and action needs means.
Widespread possession of arms inside USA is fiercely defended by the powerful National Rifle Association (NRA) which is tightly connected with conservatives.
Therefore, no gun control has been applied not even after several mass shootings in the past (Aurora, Newtown etc).
Instead, NRA addresses a message to Barack Obama and to Hilary Clinton (!) claiming that: “…the heroes, the ones who are willing to fight and die for his freedoms demands a commander-in-chief worthy of such sacrifice.” [… ]
Obviously, NRA “feels” that Obama and Hilary have or could do what is logic and necessary: Restrict guns or apply serious measures for gun control.
President Barack Obama however, has used “hard rhetoric” (american mutatis mutandis) on free gun market stating, according to The Atlantic: “We don’t have all the facts, but we do know that, once again, innocent people were killed in part because someone who wanted to inflict harm had no trouble getting their hands on a gun.” Not even close but again that’s USA.

A crucial aspect of this new massacre is, again, racism.
Americans seem to have never learned that all the people, inside and outside their country have human rights. Centuries after the invasion in American continent, they (well, many and not all of them, hopefully) don’t accept that people of all races and religions who are american citizens are equal to “whites”. Decades of fights for equal opportunities and rights have not “touched” a portion of american population. Even worse, they have not changed their mindset which is reflected more often than never into their policies inside and outside their country.

World Face

The way the two above mentioned facts in Denmark and in USA are connected becomes obvious. When “official” violence which aims to suppress movements and fights is not enough or when policies (global, regional or national) have to be imposed without facing reactions and opposition, the “card” of discord, division, internal fights and hate is used.

While USA faces a raise of their “traditional” racism, Europe itself has a long history of exploitation of humans, whether they are residents of their colonies or newcomers into more powerful countries.

Xenophobia, intolerance and racism are used against people who refuge in European countries to save their lives (article TWTP) and are dictated by the intention of governing elites to deviate people’s minds from the real responsible for their problems.
Nations, races or groups of people are demonized and then victimized when an effort is made to cause fear against difference.
Palestinians are such a victim the last 60 years. Of course, their tyrant and exterminator uses fear to obscure the facts and to persuade ordinary people against them presenting them as “threat” and enemy. It is exactly the same as hate of extremists islamists of ISIS who are obsessed in killing anyone they think as enemy.
Western methods of tackling with them do not differ much and they perpetuate the circle of mistrust, fear, intolerance and finally hate.

As far as it concerns EU, a very obscure side of that (not so sudden) raise of anti-immigrant parties is that they are also “eurosceptics”. This combination hides the notion that EU is somehow “the opposite of racism” and serves equality and human rights. Under this aspect, EU is beatified before the eyes of discontented citizens who have lost quality of life, social security, jobs, homes and rights. They are kept “quiet” and happy because the “good Union” protects them from the bad eurosceptics who happen to be racists and officials do not mention the fact that both uprooted people and fascists are their creation.

No surprise that racism (together with all its instigators as well as manifestations) is spreading after a short period of impairment just in time to manipulate low paid and with no social security people (Greece is a representative example). Xenophobia, intolerance and racism serve the perpetually smoldering purpose of a world dominance of elites.

Also published in: Reader Supported News

Relative article from Consortiumnews.com: Facing America’s Great Evils