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AlterNet / Trump's Favorite Prime Minister
« Last post by AlterNet on Yesterday at 06:00:17 PM »
Trump's Favorite Prime Minister


Can you guess who it is?


Irma, Houston, Russiagate, tax reform, and don't forget North Korea. Big stories consuming our media landscape in a country both enthnocentric and myopic, even on the sleepiest news day. So I will keep this brief. 

In 2014, after he and Najib Razak played a round of golf, Donald J. Trump gave a photo of himself to the Malaysian leader, inscribed, "To my favorite prime minister." This is according to reporting by Mark Landler, in a New York Times article, "Trump Welcomes Najib Razak, the Malaysian Leader, as President, and owner of a Fine Hotel." 

Some of Najib's qualifications for this designation may include his crackdown on journalists in Malaysia. It could be they share being investigated by the Justice Department. Or Najib's firing of investigators in his home country looking into his behavior. Or maybe it is simply because Najib stays in Trump hotels on his travels abroad. Go figure.

The Justice Department believes Najib and his cronies diverted $3.5 billion of government funds to "buy jewelry, real estate and the rights to Hollywood films," according to the Times. I guess we should consider it progress, since he was at least attempting to buy the rights to the films.

The White House avoided the traditional head-of-state photo-op hand shake with a rather stiff gathering captured by

Najib arrived with goodies, including his promise to purchase 25 Boeing 737s and eight 787 Dreamliners, and have one of Malaysia's biggest pension funds invest up to $4 billion in OUR infrastructure. You gotta love that. Our own Congress won't invest in infrastructure, but Trump's authoritarian friends will.

Malaysia has been cozy with North Korea, but claims to have backed off. You may remember Kuala Lumpur International Airport as the site where North Korean agents poisoned Kim Jong-nam, Kim Jong-un's half brother. My favorite tidbit is this: Najib is running for re-election, and the fact that he was able to enter the United States?without being detained?was considered a victory. Hooray!

To be fair, President Obama played golf with Najib in 2014, but long before any Justice Department investigation. President Trump seems to relish in his embrace of leaders of a certain ilk and Najib fits that pattern. Now back to our regular programming.    



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Source: Trump's Favorite Prime Minister
Inter Press Service - Labour / Ending Modern Slavery
« Last post by Inter Press Service on Yesterday at 06:00:16 PM »
Ending Modern Slavery

William Lacy Swing is Director General of the United Nations Migration Agency, the International Organization for Migration (IOM)

The post Ending Modern Slavery appeared first on Inter Press Service.

Source: Ending Modern Slavery
Inter Press Service - Labour / ITUC: The Global Economic Model has Failed
« Last post by Inter Press Service on Yesterday at 06:00:16 PM »
ITUC: The Global Economic Model has Failed

The International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) has declared war on climate change and fears that the global economy is permeated by greed. Secretary General Sharan Burrow makes the point: ? Nobody can survive in a world with a temperature increase of 3 or 4 degrees.

The post ITUC: The Global Economic Model has Failed appeared first on Inter Press Service.

Source: ITUC: The Global Economic Model has Failed
Centre for Research on Globalisation / Russia?s S-400s Will Protect Turkey From a ?Kurdish Air Force?
« Last post by Centre for Research on Globalisation on Yesterday at 06:00:15 PM »
Russia?s S-400s Will Protect Turkey From a ?Kurdish Air Force?

Many people thought that this day would never come, but it?s official ? Russian President Putin will sell his Turkish NATO counterpart S-400 missiles, and there?s nothing that the US or NATO can do about it. This is a profound

Source: Russia?s S-400s Will Protect Turkey From a ?Kurdish Air Force?
Centre for Research on Globalisation / Independent Media Delivers Truth and Accountability
« Last post by Centre for Research on Globalisation on Yesterday at 06:00:15 PM »
Independent Media Delivers Truth and Accountability

Since September 2001, Global Research has been bringing our readers a broad spectrum of voices analyzing global situations, from military threats against Russia and Syria, the humanitarian crisis in Palestine, to the economic machinations of the financial elite

Source: Independent Media Delivers Truth and Accountability
Centre for Research on Globalisation / Deplorable Criminal Alien Gang Member Removal Act
« Last post by Centre for Research on Globalisation on Yesterday at 06:00:15 PM »
Deplorable Criminal Alien Gang Member Removal Act

VISIT MY NEW WEB SITE: (Home – Stephen Lendman). Contact at

On September 14, House members passed the measure one week after its introduction, largely along party lines. Trump expressed support. Senate consideration will follow.

Source: Deplorable Criminal Alien Gang Member Removal Act
Anarchist News dot Org / The iPhone X proves the Unabomber was right
« Last post by on Yesterday at 06:00:15 PM »
The iPhone X proves the Unabomber was right

The introduction of the new iPhone X ? which features wireless charging, facial recognition and a price tag of $999 ? appears to be a minor event in the advance of technology. But it?s an excellent illustration of something that has long gone unrecognized: The Unabomber had a point.

Not about blowing people up in an effort to advance his social goals. Ted Kaczynski?s campaign to kill and maim chosen victims with explosives was horrific in the extreme and beyond forgiveness. But his 35,000-word manifesto, published in 1995, provided a glimpse of the future we inhabit, and his foresight is a bit unsettling.

?The Industrial Revolution and its consequences have been a disaster for the human race,? it begins. Among the ills he attributes to advances in technology are that they promise to improve our lives but end up imposing burdens we would not have chosen.

He cites the automobile, which offered every person the freedom to travel farther and faster than before. But as cars became more numerous, they became a necessity, requiring great expense, bigger roads and more regulations. Cities were designed for the convenience of drivers, not pedestrians. For most people, driving is no longer optional.

Smartphones have followed the same pattern. When cellphones first appeared, they gave people one more means of communication, which they could accept or reject. But before long, most of us began to feel naked and panicky anytime we left home without one.

To do without a cellphone ? and soon, if not already, a smartphone ? means estranging oneself from normal society. We went from ?you can have a portable communication device? to ?you must have a portable communication device? practically overnight.

Not that long ago, you could escape the phone by leaving the house. Today most people are expected to be instantly reachable at all times. These devices have gone from servants to masters.

Kaczynski cannot be surprised. ?Once a technical innovation has been introduced,? he noted, ?people usually become dependent on it, so that they can never again do without it, unless it is replaced by some still more advanced innovation. Not only do people become dependent as individuals on a new item of technology, but, even more, the system as a whole becomes dependent on it. (Imagine what would happen to the system today if computers, for example, were eliminated.)?

The problem is hardly a new one. In his book ?Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind,? Yuval Noah Harari argues that the agricultural revolution that took place 10,000 years ago was ?history?s biggest fraud.?

In the preceding 2.5 million years, when our ancestors lived as hunter-gatherers they worked less, ?spent their time in more stimulating and varied ways, and were less in danger of starvation and disease? than afterward.

Farming boosted the population but chained humans to the land and demanded ceaseless drudgery to plant, tend, harvest and process food ? while making us more vulnerable to famine, disease and war. People who had evolved over eons for one mode of life were pushed into a different mode at odds with many of their natural instincts.

But it didn?t matter. Eventually, those who preferred to live as foragers ? such as the American Indians ? no longer had a choice. In the 21st century, such a life is almost impossible. Kaczynski retreated to a remote cabin, off the grid, but 325 million Americans couldn?t do likewise even if they wanted to.

Computers and smartphones are also a Faustian bargain, in Harari?s view. Instead of saving time, inventions like email ?revved up the treadmill of life to ten times its former speed and made our days more anxious and agitated.?

It?s easy to romanticize the lives of ancient people while ignoring the perils and hardships they faced. And neither Kaczynski nor anyone else has a way to reverse history. Few of us would be willing to give up modern shelter, food, clothing, medicine, entertainment or transportation. Most of us would say the trade-offs are more than worth it.

But they happen whether they are worth it or not, and the individual has little power to resist. Technological innovation is a one-way street. Once you enter it, you are obligated to proceed, even if it leads someplace you would not have chosen to go.

Once the latest iPhone is in stores, some consumers will decide they simply can?t live without it. The rest of us may eventually find that whatever our preferences, neither can we.

Steve Chapman, a member of the Tribune Editorial Board, blogs at


Source: The iPhone X proves the Unabomber was right
Anarchist News dot Org / Anarchists to Confront the IACP in Philly this October
« Last post by on Yesterday at 06:00:15 PM »
Anarchists to Confront the IACP in Philly this October

This October, the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) will hold their annual conference in Philadelphia. This is a call for an ambitious mobilization to directly disrupt the conference, to publicly spread an explicitly anti-police position, and to attempt to open up space that is hostile to state control. We hope to do so using both coordinated and decentralized, autonomous actions in the area immediately surrounding the conference in Center City and throughout Philly.

The IACP brings together law enforcement agencies from throughout the world to "advance the science and art of police services" through international coordination, training, and policy work. Their 2017 conference will take place at the Pennsylvania Convention Center, with four days of workshops, an exhibition hall with corporate vendors, and a number of secondary events at other locations. Also, a "general assembly."

This call for opposition comes from the perspective that policing is inherently a colonial, white supremacist project. From their inception, the police have had as their primary function the maintenance of a social order based on violent domination along lines of race, gender, class & ability; from slave patrols to strike-breakers and from vice squads to gang units. Opposition to the IACP presents a unique opportunity to advance a position that is absolutely against all policing, as a large part of the organization's agenda mirrors that of those who would reform the institution. Body cameras, diversity in hiring, "trust and accountability," and above all, "community policing" are all central themes of the conference and to recommendations for "21st Century Policing."

As the Trump administration (universally endorsed by law enforcement unions during the election) bombastically seeks to reinvigorate the militarization of police, it is a crucial time to aggressively put forward an analysis that recognizes militarization and community policing not as divergent, but as complementary parts of a coherent strategy of domination.

Meanwhile, the hundreds of participating agencies and workshops starkly demonstrate the severe intersectionality of the violence the police have always carried out. Interlocking movements for black liberation, indigenous struggle against colonization, sex workers' self-determination, resistance to ableist police violence, radical political movements resisting repression, queer rebellion, global anti-imperialism, migrant and refugee justice and no borders movements, housing justice, environmental struggles, and more, all have a stake in opposing the strategies and tactics that will be promoted at this conference.

The IACP conference puts on display what we know from our daily participation in diverse forms of resistance: that every struggle is a struggle against the police.

While all the departments involved have histories of (and foundations in) violence, many have also seen fierce resistance to that violence in the recent past. Participating departments from Albuquerque, Chicago, Milwaukee, Seattle, the Bay Area, and more have seen rebellions against them in the last several years. We hope to use this opportunity to build connections with those who carry these memories of antagonism towards the police and contribute to lived experiences of uncontrollable revolt.

A complete list of presenters, vendors, and workshops is available on the conference website,, but here is a small sampling of some notable participants:

? Peter Newsham, D.C. Metropolitan Police Department (who gave orders to kettle protestors on J20)

? Hennepin County Sheriff's Office (speaking on their experience sending officers to repress resistance at Standing Rock)

? Robert Metzger, Chief of Pasco (WA) Police Dept. (presenting "Public Trust After a Police Use of Deadly Force Incident," based on lessons on maintaining stability after the police murder of Antonio Zambrano-Montes)

? Local departments from Philadelphia, New York, Albuquerque, Seattle, New Orleans, Edmonton, Chicago, Las Vegas, El Salvador, Phoenix, Salt Lake City, Tempe, AZ, Tucson, AZ, Dubai, Portland, OR, San Diego, Los Angeles, Milwaukee, San Francisco, Vancouver, Australia, Raleigh, NC, Dallas, and many more.

? Federal agencies, including FBI, Border Patrol, ATF and USCIS.

Expect more information and specific calls soon. In the meantime, save the date, make plans, study some maps, learn the terrain and spread the word throughout the region and beyond. Here are some more detailed resources to get started:

Outreach Zine for Reading // Outreach Zine for Printing

Workshop Descriptions and Schedule // Conference Hotel Map // Special Event Schedule

Against White Supremacy // Against the Police

For a world without cops, prisons, or borders.



Source: Anarchists to Confront the IACP in Philly this October
AlterNet / Why 'South Park' Is Perfectly Armed to Fight the Alt-Right
« Last post by AlterNet on Yesterday at 06:00:05 AM »
Why 'South Park' Is Perfectly Armed to Fight the Alt-Right

The satirical cartoon has a perfect chance to turn around and bite the trollish right-wing hand that feeds it.


?South Park? creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone are harboring a dirty secret: Much of their audience, the 18- to 34-year-old demographic, overlaps with a certain young, male, white slice of President Donald Trump?s base. You know, the ones who troll liberals online and proudly rock MAGA hats in public.

It is perhaps the reality of this ugly Venn diagram that led Parker and Stone to announce that ?South Park?s? 21st season, which debuted last Wednesday on Comedy Central, would avoid satirizing the president. In an interview with Bill Simmons, the cartoonists claimed that they had grown tired of mocking Trump, whom they compared to a monkey ?running himself into the wall over and over.?

While Trump has been low-hanging fruit for comedians, a particularly nasty segment of the president?s base is no laughing matter. Known as the alt-right, these online trolls get a kick out of transgressing liberal sensibilities. They not only dabble in sexism and anti-Semitism; they have built an aesthetic based on white supremacy and claims of reverse racism. Founded and subsequently nurtured on 4chan and other anonymous online communities, the alt-right gleefully breaks modern-day taboos as a form of protest against normative ideals.

It is this counterculture that can often be found in ?South Park? ? especially in the earlier seasons. ?South Park? created a cult following through an unabashed, irreverent humor that spared nothing and no one. Indeed, the show has even been labeled ?racist? for its abuse of ethnic stereotypes. Hell, one of its few black characters is named Token.

The alt-right revels in what they see as an unapologetic contempt for all that others deem holy. In truth, the creators are far more nuanced and progressive than most give them credit for. Token, for instance, amplifies the fact that, yep, TV shows employ token, often one-dimensional characters of color in a practice that is often more a disservice to underrepresented groups than a benefit to them. Still, parker and Stone cannot deny that ?South Park? has fans in the some of the darkest, most hateful corners of the internet.

When the duo said it would no longer parody Trump on their show, The_Donald subreddit, an online basket for the president?s ?deplorables,? rejoiced over the news. ?Fuck yea. Finally looking forward to a new season of South Park,? one Reddit user said. ?Its only fun when the snowflakes get bashed [sic],? another user chimed in. ?THEY LIVE! Matt Stone and Trey Parker are COMING BACK TO REALITY!,? an enthusiastic redditor proclaimed.

While this decision appeased Trump?s base, Parker and Stone absolutely did not preclude them from the scope of their ridicule.

In the season premiere on Wednesday, Parker and Stone set their sights on a big sector of Trump fans ? the kind of white, blue-collar voters who blame everyone but themselves for their economic status. The episode, which Deadline called a ?subtle takedown of white supremacists,? had two narratives: the town?s Confederate flag-waving rednecks protesting Amazon?s Alexa for taking their jobs, and Randy?s feud with the protestors for disrupting the set of his HGTV-inspired TV show, ?White People Renovating Houses.?

Randy concocts a plan to replace all Alexas in town with the aggrieved white nationalists, thereby ending the Confederate-themed demonstrations. When one of the protestors refuses, calling the labor demeaning, Randy fumes, ?Sorry you didn?t go to college so you have to take the jobs you can get. Coal mining and truck driving are not exactly jobs of the future. You?re stuck in another time.? The protestor runs off, yelling, ?Muslims trying to kill us, black people rioting, Mexicans having babies ? I say, ?Kill ?em all!'?

The political satire was admittedly muddled, but it succeeded in crystallizing the absurdity of white, blue-collar entitlement. The target of the premiere was older Americans, those who have seen the new economy pass them by. Yet ?South Park? has an unusual opportunity in future episodes to use its comedy to enlighten young, disenchanted white men who have embraced the alt-right ideology.

Parker and Stone did not create ?South Park? to push a political agenda. The self-described libertarians are in it for the jokes. They also likely despise liberals as much as these new-age conservatives ? a healthy, fair position. But because ?South Park? spares nobody its scorn, Parker and Stone can ? and perhaps should ? do the country a solid and employ the alt-right?s tactless humor against them. As a Trojan horse, ?South Park? can finally demonstrate to members of the alt-right just how pathetic and ultimately self-destructive their dead-end worldview is. They?re watching, after all.

Although the alt-right frequently bemoans the liberal bubble, they are just as guilty of confining themselves to their favorite channels. ?South Park? has been a safe space for the alt-right since its inception. It would be only appropriate if the show turned around and devoured its own viewers.


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Source: Why 'South Park' Is Perfectly Armed to Fight the Alt-Right
Centre for Research on Globalisation / Trump Threatens North Korea with ?Effective and Overwhelming? Military Force
« Last post by Centre for Research on Globalisation on Yesterday at 06:00:03 AM »
Trump Threatens North Korea with ?Effective and Overwhelming? Military Force

In the wake of North Korea?s missile launch, US President Trump and his top officials have once again threatened to use military force to end the supposed threat posed by the small, economically backward country and its limited nuclear arsenal.

Source: Trump Threatens North Korea with ?Effective and Overwhelming? Military Force
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