Archive for the ‘Democracy’ Category

G? or NATO or ?

Posted: 28/07/2018 by zandtao in Democracy, ONE planet, Struggle
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It is difficult to come to terms with the Trump-puppetry. I suspect, although I don’t know for sure, that the Trump position is the least controlled policy in the years of neoliberalism, but there is no doubt how effective his time as President has been for the 1%. The 1% control the Republican party, and even though in toto they didn’t want him to begin with they support him now as he is getting them money.

Trump is clearly narcissistic, probably to the point of there being a clinical problem, but this matters not to the 1% whose greed is sociopathic and species-suicidal anyway. They give the Trump-puppet a leash of enabled narcissism that covers a continual erosion of regulation that protects people whilst leaving untouched the regulation that protects financial mechanisms – that protects the profits of the 1%. (see Chomsky on Trump as a distraction).

For years Republicans have performed the neoliberal dance completely subservient to the 1%-profit-making, there is therefore no reason to believe that they are suddenly enamoured of such a philistine. Apart from the immorality of war which is bipartisan, they do usually claim some sort of moral ethos to their position. Trump does not have any appeal to morality, his rationale is hardcore right-wing populism. I am convinced that many republicans have a dilemma over the promotion of certain right-wing values that cause violence. But this is tolerated because of the increased profits and deregulation that is the 1%-bidding.

So what about this Guardian opinion? Is there anything to it other than a snowflake knee-jerking?

I have never considered the Russia interference issue because to me it is a RED herring – cold war joke. You have to be very ignorant to think that there has not been some Russian manipulation through social media. How serious the impact is I have no idea, but that has got to be a conditioning problem connected to gullibility. However the essential tenet of US foreign policy since the Second World War has been manipulation, so there is a clear level of hypocrisy. During the Cold War era there was a continual vying of international interest between US and USSR – dominated by US manipulation. Despite the naivete of this Guardian article this US manipulation has never been for the promotion of democracy – it could better be described as the promotion of neocolonialism of which sham electoral democracy is a lynchpin for the deluding of populations.

So what does a public show of solidarity with Putin show? Maybe it is that the world must accept a move to the right?

For me some sort of alliance between the US, USSR and China initially appears beneficial for the world. But I suspect that the Trump-puppet/ Putin summit was not concerned with cementing a G3 but an attempt at marginalising China in the Trump-puppet trade war.

In this clip Paul Jay of TRNN (the Real News Network) describes the interrelationship between free market, oligarchs (Russian and American), their puppets, Trump and possibly Putin, and the way they control governments. There are far too many clarifications that Paul makes it is a waste of writing to discuss them, listen.

And in relation to a G3, in this clip Paul makes it clear that Trump-puppet strategies are concerned with China and Iran – his actions indicate this so I won’t disagree. It makes sense that Trump-puppet cements an alliance with Russia in a trade war with China, and Russia is an essential ally in the balkanisation of the Middle East and the control of Iran.

This quote places the Russiagate hype into an obvious context that I had not previously seen – shame on me “The reason that there was such vicious glee emanating from liberals in regards to RT America being targeted and sanctioned, is because liberals have been conditioned to believe that Russia in general, and RT America in particular, is the sole reason for Trump being president. The mainstream media, in fulfilling their position as the propaganda arm for the elites and the military-intelligence industrial complex, has continuously beat the anti-Russia and anti-RT drum.” I have watched the machinations of neoliberalism, the Corporate-Democrats, eschewing Bernie in favour of Hillary, and since the Trump-puppet election their failure to come up with a meaningful strategy to fight the Trump-puppet – simply hoping he will implode. Their efforts are far more concerned with fighting the genuine democratisation of the party, much in line with the attacks on Corbyn through anti-Semitism and the like. Here is a clear analysis of Fake News and Russia by the late Edwards S Herman, a collaborator of Chomsky; it is detailed and not just focussed on Russia but the Fake News of the New York Times: its approach is similar to this blog.

BAR have a very clear position on this RED herring of Russia as illustrated by this gif:-

As usual BAR analysis is on the money and is far more critical of the snowflake response to Russia. This article is rather polemic but describes the situation. Glen’s use of “dependable” is interesting and worth considering. I completely accept that Obama and Clinton as neoliberal mouthpieces were dependable. What about Trump-puppet? This is a subjective view, and as I don’t know him has got to have very little credence. I accept Chomsky’s view that Trump is loving the attention – and whilst snowflakes particularly are focussed on him the 1% are making long-term changes that Americans and the world will suffer from as they increase accumulation. The Trump-puppet’s narcissism is also drawing all the flack, and this the 1% have got to love. In fact if Trump-puppet continues to do what they want, he is better than Clinton- and Obama-puppet. Certainly Obama’s popularity enabled introduction of certain policies without disruptive response. Trump-puppet is causing far more damage to the social fabric of America but this does not overly concern the 1%. Trump-puppet is increasing war profits, but there has to be serious questions as to how much damage he is doing to international business “ethos”.

For example, do the 1% want a trade war with China? I subscribe to the view that there is a global 1%-land, and 1%-“nationality” is far more important in 1%-land. Despite some views to the contrary (Icke etc.), these people are still human. The American 1% will certainly pay lip-service to Trump-puppet’s MAGA although accumulation will be their first priority. I suspect close ties between US and Russian oligarchs (not something that was started by Trump-puppet), but I am not so sure about China because their protectionist policies especially with regards to currency tends to be a barrier to imperial control. So I am unsure about China and the trade war.

Is Trump-puppet dependable? I would say no. Is he controllable? I think very much so. Will he always be so? ??????

The same article talks about the corporatocracy wanting diversity, I think they have accepted that rather than wanting it. Accepting it means that they have been able to profit from it, no moral position. Now there is confrontation rather than diversity, they can still exploit it. Exploiting people is what they do. To them it doesn’t matter whether there is confrontation, in fact it is better for them because accepting diversity risks a united position against the 1%; division is the usual 1% strategy. For the 1% bipartisan confrontation, racist and sexist confrontation suits, so there I disagree with Glenn – “Thus, corporate America, wedded as it is to a “diversity” doctrine that means little to the masses of Black people but is a red flag to the White Man’s Party “deplorables,” will be forced to identify more publicly with the Democrats, or pretend to be apolitical.”

I want to finally note this article in which BAR attacks the Democrats’ black caucus. I note rather than comment, it is not for a white person to comment on such issues. However I will say to white people who talk about black people as one … There is a unity of all black people when they meet white racism, as white people we need to change our racism, stop racist assaults at whatever level, and see black people as the different people they are.

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Snowflake Confusion

Posted: 06/07/2018 by zandtao in Corbyn, Democracy, ONE planet, Struggle, War


The first principle of politics is Unity so I hate the idea of condemning someone writing near the Left but the viewpoint of this neoliberal lackey is a huge problem because she confuses the waters. Analysing why I say this however is useful.

I first want to establish some parameters. I am not defending Susan Sarandon because I don’t know where she stands, I am only criticising the position of the writer of the article. I also wish to explain my use of the word “snowflake”. I equate this word with a term “wishy-washy liberal” that many socialists have used. But it is a word used by populist right – alt-right. Should that be a reason for me not to use it? I use it because the description feels apt. Liberals, armchair socialists are one of the causes of the move to the right although the main cause is the finance of the dark money network promoting right-wing populism by supporting “bad actors”. Liberals and armchair socialists tend to just talk. Social media is an excellent media for these people because they can pretend to be active. These people might say “I agree with you but I will not strike”. “I agree with you but … I am not risking my job, my house, my catchment area/school district, my way of life, my standard of living”. In other words the agreement was in words only. Because establishment knew they were only confronted by words, they did nothing to change. And now that these word-battlers have been confronted by the alt-right they panic, but they have no substance – they are snowflakes. Why call them snowflakes? Because they must choose, they must be more determined, for the world to change snowflakes must get a backbone.

In the UK snowflakes are Guardian readers so it is not surprising that this article is from the Guardian, Owen Jones needs to sort her.

Let’s now analyse. The main thrust of the article is that because some people support the Greens they are taking votes from the Democrats enabling Trump. This is an argument about strategic voting, and strategic voting generally misses the point. Yes, I would have voted for Clinton as I would Blair, but 98% of me doesn’t want Clinton/Blair – 100% of me doesn’t want Trump. What a choice for someone whose politics is mainly concerned with compassion for ALL – compassion and freedom for all people and compassion for the planet. This is the dilemma of neoliberalism, and the Guardian article just perpetuates this neoliberal compromise. People need to stand up and demand compassion for ALL, snowflakes don’t, Democrats and Labour remain neoliberal, and we have Trump and Brexit – and the 1% increasing the power of the alt-right.

There should be no need for a Green party. Democracy and Socialism (Labour) should automatically promote Green. In fact Green should be the priority as put forward by indigenous wisdom, but if we were democrats and socialists we would recognise the truth of indigenous wisdom. The failure lies not with Susan Sarandon supporting the Greens but with the mainstream of Democrats and Labour who support a neoliberal agenda, an agenda which includes so many policies that support war and wage-slavery. Snowflakes don’t be “Guardian readers”, be compassionate for ALL and demand change in Democrats and Labour – unite behind Bernie and Corbyn. End neoliberalism.

From the article I disagree with a quote from Susan Sarandon, maybe it is out of context because from what I know of her she would support what I then say. “Only a few months ago, Susan was explaining to this newspaper that had Hillary been elected: “We would still be fracking, we would be at war. It wouldn’t be much smoother. Look what happened under Obama that we didn’t notice.” As she concluded of Hillary: “I did think she was very, very dangerous.”” But what Susan doesn’t say in this quote (maybe she says it elsewhere) has been put clearly by Chomsky here. Trump has benefitted business by removing regulations. I would also suggest that under Trump there has been increased actions of racism and sexism. Under Hillary I doubt if there would have been the increased racism and sexism, I am not so sure so many regulations would have been removed. But in terms of war and wage-slavery there would have been business as usual, the same as Trump without the bluster.

The point of this blog is that the writer is participating in attacks on each other – on ourselves, instead of attacks on neoliberalism, very safe for her job. She can create snowflake debate without losing her job, she can pretend she is actually working for an improved life for all without threatening her own livelihood and family – because she is not threatening the media establishment of neoliberalism who pay her wages.

For me there are only two classes, and we need to work for Unity in the struggle against the 1%. Promoting strategic voting at the expense of needed policy is not a way of doing this. I also propose recognition of a new “class” – the snowflake class. Many people divide the 99% so here is my division – alt-right, snowflakes and socialists. At the moment socialists are very much in the minority but they are a driving force for compassion for ALL. For the world to change snowflakes will have to become disadvantaged enough that they see the need to be socialists. At the same time the alt-right who are not deplorables need to realise that their egos are being pandered to by Trump and Brexit as a tool of the 1%, then the good people from the alt-right will learn to bury their differences with socialists and work for compassion for ALL. A long struggle.

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Venezuela and John Oliver

Posted: 10/06/2018 by zandtao in Democracy, Freedom, Media, Struggle


I usually watch John Oliver, and have generally seen his show as sensible and being well researched. At the time I was somewhat dismayed when I heard this programme on Venezuela. For years I had known about US intervention in Venezuela – as usual intervention because of oil, but when I heard Oliver’s programme doubts were cast. Rather stupidly I didn’t follow up my doubts.

I just caught the truth here. I picked it up from the Real News Network, it is from Empire Files (youtube channel) and is a blow-by-blow debunking of John Oliver’s bias (I hope they haven’t made any errors as it will be aired). If you are interested in seeing how colonialist bias works, watch this:-

I take everything I watch on TV with a pinch of salt – always have. But it is disappointing to see John Oliver collaborating so much. If I am any judge there is no doubt in my mind that in general the researchers are working for positive change – the American word “progressive”. However his discussion of Venezuela is part of the collective fear of socialism as exhibited with the only consistency on the IDWeb (socialism and IDWeb discussed here). I cannot accept that amongst those researchers they are not just bleeting liberals, I am sure there are socialists working there. Why did they push this out? It was not a big issue for the US, why did they accept whatever pressures were put on them?

It makes me more frightened of Trump’s America – and that is not something I thought I could say. Liberal issues are controlled. People are able to discuss them because they have been sufficiently countered by the ranting right description of snowflakes. I know Hillary colluded with neo-liberalism but why are John Oliver and his research team? They could have ignored Venezuela, why put out the propaganda?

Censorship is getting worse.

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Conditioned Freedom

Posted: 23/02/2018 by zandtao in Buddhadasa, Democracy, Freedom, Struggle
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An interesting podcast with the Martinez and Russell.

I want to begin with Francesca’s diatribe against the welfare system for the disabled which was clear concise but fundamentally flawed. All involved in the delivery of that welfare want to help the disabled become functioning workers – Universal Declaration of Human Rights Article 23(1) right to work. But the 1%-system does not care. Their profits are best served with able-bodied wage-slaves so why bother with disabled wage-slaves? However an important aspect of the stability of 1%-exploitation is that it is caring capitalism, so some money trickles down to the disabled (and others) but with no intention of ever being effective.

Until we see the 1%-system for what it is, there is no possibility for change. Those who do well out of it – usually voters of the right of the two parties (see description of enemies in discussion on George Monbiot) will always be able to convince themselves and others that the system is caring. Until the trickle stops.

Raoul’s description of freedom is also apt. The system does want us to believe we have the right to choose so that we can be controlled and blamed accordingly, but he is also right that we don’t have a choice – mostly. From the Buddha this is best understood as conditioning, everything is cause and effect. The conditioning that made Theresa May is just that – conditioning. The conditioning that imprisons Joe Nicked and Leroy Banged-up is just that – conditioning. You grow up on the South London estates, crime is all around, helplessness is in the air, and the only way out is a blaze of glory in crime – and subsequent death.

Conditioning is about cause and effect, and if you live in the world of cause and effect the result is inevitable. But the Buddha’s point in describing this conditioning (known as paticcasamuppada) is that he describes a way out. This way out in Buddhism is known as detachment, and is a recognition that through meditation and detachment we do not have to accept the conditioning.

However this conditioning is not usually seen by Buddhists as the same conditioning that Raoul is talking about, but it is. Cause and effect leads to the same results whoever you are. If we consider this meme based on the teachings of Buddhadasa:-

then conditioning means attachment to the khandas and self. By detaching from the khandas and self, we create the conditions for sunnata.

This model applies socially. By not attaching to the causes and effects or our upbringing and environments we don’t have to become Joe Nicked, Theresa May, or Magnus 1%-Ceo. It is all conditioning, it is just that for some this conditioning is so much easier. And there I completely agree with Raoul. At the end of the podcast Raoul talks about ways out of this conditioning as well, and he says that they are discussed in his book “Creating Freedom”. Need to look.

I see this process of “creating freedom” as two-staged . First and foremost we need to detach from our own conditioning and so follow our paths. If we are attached we cannot see through the conditioning, and remain mired in the suffering. But once that path has started we then work to provide others with the freedom of detachment, although that freedom is not likely to be attained. Or we work for alleviation of the worst aspects of the conditioning – to try to provide some freedom from suffering, to help those who are born into conditions that will lead to poverty and crime. Understanding and detaching from conditioning would lead us all on the same path of freeing people from suffering; Theresa May, Tony Blair, Magnus 1%-Ceo, these are people still attached – it is just they are attached by a silver spoon and others, not free, are envious.

At one point in the podcast they discussed how religion often joined in the blame game tending to support society’s leaders as better people without pointing out the silver spoon they benefit from. To highlight this I want to talk about reincarnation, and its relation to privilege and the caste system in Hinduism. Hindu society is very stratified (the caste system), and whilst some argue it is disappearing there is clear evidence it isn’t. Such an unfair system ought to be criticised by a compassionate religion but with reincarnation Hinduism gives it a justification. If we live a good life we are reborn in a better position, and this is often interpreted as being rich.

It is important here to draw a distinction here between Hinduism and Buddhism. The Buddha was a revisionist, he saw weaknesses in the prevailing Hinduism and attempted to create change. But he often used the language of the time, and to avoid conflict used the language of rebirth when describing ego rebirth – the birth of self. Because of this language many Buddhists have also accepted reincarnation, although Buddhadasa amongst others describes this as an historical confusion (a mixture of Buddhism and Hinduism travelling out of India).

I accept Buddhadasa’s interpretation of the Buddha gospels, and for this reason I don’t accept reincarnation, and the inherent understanding, although not often expressed, that the rich deserve to be treated better because they have previously lived good lives and hence come back rich. There are so many assumptions made in this understanding but it is a clear example of how Hindus and most Buddhists support the class structure. It is my understanding that we must deal with the conditions in this life, and that’s it – there is no self to reincarnate how can there be reincarnation?

Later in the podcast involving Hugo Rifkind they began discussing elections and change. It has taken a long time in my life to reach the political conclusions I have reached. And it is a conclusion that hurts when I think of my family and the people I grew up with, my family and these people would be described as middle-class (not my definition of class). It requires two things for these people to accept the situation we are in:-

Greed for what they have
An ability to accept all the deprivation around them and accept all the reasons the system gives for that deprivation, reasons that do not require systemic change.

I will call these two acceptances:- greed and delusion. 10/3/18 I have reviewed these two acceptances and classified them as 3 – Fear Delusion and Responsibility.

Deep-down most middle-class people know how bad things are in the world, and what they want is to live life with what they have. Most accept the conditions they live in, would hope for some improvement but are more scared of what could be worse. To me this is the nature of conservative Britain.

Hugo Rifkind symbolises this. He doesn’t like the hardline of austerity Tories, but is more scared of the change that Corbyn represents. The by-word is economy, the middle-class use the word “economy” to mask their fear – although it is a giveaway. I surmise that Hugo knows the economy is fragile, and because of this fragility doesn’t want to rock the boat; attempting to change the economy risks instability with the ways the 1% would use to protect it. For me this is the slender grip on politics that represents middle-class Britain.

In other words they are bought off. They know that rocking the boat risks their jobs, mortgages, and way of life. They are happy to blame the poor for being in the position they are in. They accept conditionality vaguely, and know that they would behave the same way if they were in the same place. So they accept the greed and delusion that are the requirements for maintaining their own stability.

Often you hear clear-minded people describing the failure that our system is, rationale and logic would automatically demand change if decisions are to be based on any form of compassion. But in the end it doesn’t matter what arguments are presented to these middle-classes they just want the stability for their greed. Highlight the inadequacies of their delusions, and there will be an angry backlash – because of guilt. No person likes to have it thrown in their face that their greed and delusion are contributing to the deaths from state intervention in the Middle East. So they espouse caring capitalism when it blatantly is not true. This is not a rational position, it is a position of fear yet political arguments counter these fears with rationality. And then frustration and anger arises, and this gives the middle classes an excuse to blame – emotional, young, immature etc.

It is not the politicians who run the economy so the middle-classes don’t follow the pathos which is the neoliberal bipartisan game. They have faith in the economic establishment, Bank of England, civil service, and non-elected government. They cling to this faith even as the establishment is falling apart. And part of this establishment is voting Tory – or voting for Blair once they intuitively knew he was working with the 1%.

Hugo is a purveyor of this middle-class faith because of his support for “establishment”, economy and stability, hence he writes for The Spectator.

And the priests of this faith are the egotists (opportunists) who want power but should never have it. These system go-getters have always kept the stability. Middle-classes don’t like them even if their family becomes one, but they are willing to accept that they will continue the stability.

Meanwhile middle-class lives tick over, celebrity is followed within their fantasies to make life palatable. At the same time the impoverished, trapped in their own conditionality, follow the same celebrity, and hope that maybe that celebrity will offer them a way out.

And the glue that keeps all this together is the 1% and what they allow to trickle down. This trickle is sufficient to provide stability so they let the 1% get on with it. Occupy got support, pinpointed the 1%, primarily because the crash had taken homes. This was the 1% mistake, too many peoples’ stability had been taken away.

The greed and egotism of the 1% don’t matter to the middle-classes because they provide stability, they know their lives are underpinned by greed. Wars don’t matter so long as the war is not brought home like Vietnam. Africans and Muslims dying don’t matter, but refugees do because immigrants affect their lifestyles.

Academia is made up of intellectuals who are often middle-class. This is who most radicals come from, and it is hard to say “my parents are like that”. Maybe it is easier for me to say because my parents are dead. We have a world controlled by the 1% just so that they can increase their accumulation. The middle-class are bought off to support stability – the status quo. Out of this, life wondrously produces conscious people seeking change, but our own emotions can’t say the greed of our family is the cause. So we look to blame others, seek idealisms, seek new narratives.

But there aren’t any. Our family, our countries are able to see others die so long as they can live their protected lives. People have to turn on these middle-classes, these family members, but how can you do that to the people who have given you your genes and upbringing?

But until activists accept such truths about families and middle-classes there is no change, plenty of discussion but no change.

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My grassroots

Posted: 23/02/2018 by zandtao in Democracy, Struggle
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In the blog on George Monbiot’s talk with Russell, I talked of the existence and importance of grassroots activism. It is important to examine that activism.

I could imagine Militant (or whatever name the Trots call themselves now) would describe themselves as grassroots activists, but what they are doing is campaigning within the grassroots for whatever idealistic form of Marxism they currently profess. To me this is not activism, this is proselytising or Marxist evangelism. Grassroots means working on local issues that matter to the ordinary people. And when I examine the grassroots work I did, this was lacking; I also was in part campaigning, campaigning for the Labour party.

For me there are only two issues that in the end matter, war and wage-slavery. These are the compassionate issues which are at the basis of 1%-exploitation, end these and there is no 1%. But the point about grassroots activism is that the issues have to be defined by the community, even if that means more firemen to get cats down from trees. Community solidarity leads to class solidarity and with the issues of war and wage-slavery there is no 1%-accumulation – LONG TERM, VERY LONG TERM.

In my own activism I was half-way there, and if I had been at it longer would have improved that proportion. It doesn’t matter whether the motivation is spiritual, communist, Marxist or compassion, working with the grassroots community on issues that matter to the community is the way forward.

It is a duty. It is important to understand duty. Duty has no end product. It is the grassroots organising that matters. Of course an ideal of ending the 1% would be best for humanity but that just isn’t going to happen. If you go into grassroots activism with that objective you won’t last long.

And at the same time you have to watch ego. Many organisers, such as George Cooper, dedicated their lives to working in the grassroots movement. They would only be known by comrades, and not by their titles or impact. I contrast this with my initial egoic go-getting where I eventually ended up being National Secretary of the Labour Aid and Development Committee. Whilst it is nice to be able to say that – ego again, I was doing nothing but facilitating a pointless lobbying group which at the time I was national secretary did nothing but promote my name. I only worked a year on it, and I think it then died.

My other egoic claim to fame was my conference on International Trade Union Solidarity, and the keyword is “my”. This was not part of a movement because my go-getting activism marginalised the token participation of others. They were weak and I was bullish – not a good combination, and hence the one-off. I learnt a great deal, the conference of maybe 30 people learned, and it was topped off by the “Sisters of the Long March” impromptu performance in the plenary prior to their fund-raising gig in the evening. I am proud of this event – ego again, but recognise that it contributed little to the movement.

Later I worked hard on wage-slavery both within the Trades Council and the NUT branch. But in truth I was too focussed on national approaches, although sometimes the differences disappear because of the national nature of the organisations. But it is local where the work is needed.

For the first Gulf War, using my position on the Trades Council I was very active in peace campaigning, so active I suffered burnout. But I have no doubts that the strategies of peace and local trade unionism are appropriate local activity.

I would like to think that now I would still be doing a little to promote peace and working within the union movement, perhaps becoming a pensioner activist like good old George.

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New Narrative?

Posted: 18/02/2018 by zandtao in Corbyn, Democracy, Struggle
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It seems to have taken a long time to deal with Simon Amstell, and here is George Monbiot – a name I have seen often but I know nothing of him.

I liked his talk but I have to ask “why is his narrative new?” Is it just political rebranding?

All my life what mattered was grass roots campaigning. It didn’t matter whether it was grassroots campaigning in the Labour party or grassroots campaigning for the trade union. It was grassroots campaigning. And that meant campaigning in the grassroots for the grassroots – campaigning by and for the people, not the Labour party or trade union. That is real democracy.

Who are the enemies of grassroots democracy?

Politically as a system neoliberalism is the enemy of grassroots democracy. But what types of enemy are these neoliberals?

1) The 1%
2) The bipartisan system of neoliberalism
3) The right-wing party
4) The opportunists within the party of the people.

The rise of the right-wing has occurred because we have failed to promote the grassroots movement. Slowly through my adult life the power of the grassroots movement has got less and less, and now people are calling for a new narrative. But this is also divisive.

Monbiot is calling for communities, those communities are the grassroots. There has always been organising in grassroots but that organising has failed because the left has failed because there has been the rise of liberals who have “taken over” the left – the rise of opportunism. Does Monbiot attack liberals? He can’t, they are Guardian readers.

The genuine left has always organised through the grassroots, in trade unions and begrudgingly in the Labour party. Why begrudgingly? Because the Labour party has increasingly been taken over by opportunists, people who are using the Labour party to gain political power – Blair, Guardian readers, Clintons.

When George describes Bernie he talks about the latest form of grassroots campaigning, that is all. No new narrative – just a “return?” to grassroots campaigning. I question return because I haven’t lived in the UK since 1992 – never lived in the US, I missed New Labour, I missed the continuing rise of opportunism, I missed the rise of Liberal power and Guardian Readers, I missed the failure in grassroots campaigning. I missed the rise of George Monbiot?

As for Corbyn I think he is fighting back for the grassroots – same as Bernie. George, you defended Bernie but did not defend Corbyn. I don’t know enough about the grassroots in the UK now, but the Labour party has had years of Blairites, Liberals and Guardian readers dividing the class. They are still doing it. Class Unity is the grassroots call, do you make it, George?

The issue has and always will be class, redefine class so that class unity is contemporary. But it is still class, not a new narrative. Look at the 4 enemies and how they fit in with class. The 1% is bourgeoisie – clear. The bipartisan electoral system has always been used to divide the proletariat – 1%-system. Working within the grassroots movement, people have always said “look at this or that puppet opportunist climbing on my back and taking my money”. King UK user – Blair, Marx couldn’t find a clearer example of opportunism, Blair is the past master. The 1% love him, that’s how he hung around for so long, he was a tool, an opportunist puppet. And he promoted liberalism, now we have people demanding a new narrative when all we want is a return to grassroots campaigning – my apologies to all the comrades who have spent their lives campaigning within the grassroots, comrades who would not allow class analysis to die.

The people who have let the grassroots down are Blair’s liberals and the Guardian readers who have not understood class and not understood the meaning of grassroots campaigning, and the people who have failed to educate them.

Because of this failure to support grassroots campaigning amongst the proletariat, there has been a rise in the right and their parties. When Liberal intellectuals call for a new narrative, what is happening is a further cut into the underbelly of the grassroots? Every Guardian reader, who does not stand up and say “I am a member of the class and proud of it”, is helping the 1%, their Liberal arrogance whether for identity politics or some intellectual distraction is enabling the accumulation by the 1%.

There is no new narrative, just a need for new education, a new understanding of what the class now stands for. The 1%-system is consumerism. The grassroots working together for mindful consuming based on class interest is one strategy, withdrawing labour used to be a strategy now we can withdraw purchasing power as a class strategy. Look at how much Israel is frightened of the Boycott campaign. Make the Boycott campaign a pillar of your Guardian columns, George, and see how long you keep your job.

The class will always be divided on race gender and sexuality but they are united by class. Where is the class rallying call that unites all races, genders and sexual preferences together as people who are demanding an end to exploitation by the 1%? Instead Liberals, Guardian Readers whine about this or that issue. They climb the wall about Trump instead of fighting back against the latest 1%-puppet, Trump. Apart from the 1%, it is Liberal intellectualism that wants the separation, that wants to say we are different to the guy who cleans the toilets. Well you are being used, exploited – any other word.

Where are the calls for the end of war, end of wage-slavery, those are the class interests, not fighting for the scraps that trickle down? Class Unity.

There is no new narrative – just class and their enemies.

I learned one thing George. There is a term for all the people who are causing confusion on the internet dividing my class – the Dark Money Network. But remember, George, even though the mainstream media, MSM, are not funded by the Dark Money Network, they don’t have to be because MSM is already 1%.

The only people who are not 1%, Dark Money or MSM, are the grassroots and their organisers who have maintained their integrity and discipline throughout. I thank them, and call for greater class solidarity.

George, we all must earn a living. Have you compromised with the above? I really don’t know.

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On my Russell Brand binge I am listening to Anne Phillips – Under the Skin, but I’m afraid it didn’t get me. Because she is an academic her observations were interesting, but it just came across as that. I was left asking “how will it change?”

Where was the challenge? She was safe, safe again – that’s how I described “sausages” – Adam Harris.

There was a section in which she described different classes of women as suffering more under capitalism – low paid workers suffering; she did not say black women suffering. What different classes? The different classes the 1% want academics to describe so that the better-paid wage-slaves don’t identify with the low-paid wage-slaves – dividing the class. I think she even used the word elite to describe some of these better-paid women – again a nice obfuscation so that elite and 1% are not perceived as the same. It reminded me of the sentence in Glen Ford’s article “Similarly afro-pessimism only surfaced after enough black faces got comfy spots in the academy” – discussed here.

Anne makes some nice academic points through her powers of observation, and from her being well read. It is worth listening for that alone, but she has not picked up me as a follower – not that that matters. When I look at wiki she has done much in promoting gender studies, undoubtedly this is beneficial. Bell, is what she is doing revolutionary? I don’t know but it didn’t feel like it.

The talk just screamed liberalism, pleasant, considered, sympathetic liberalism. Or as bell would say, it screamed reformist feminism to me; I don’t know what bell thinks about her. And here is a common liberal position that completely negates any possible real understanding, she said there was no true essence. This is the sort of academic position that in my mind is ludicrous but in academic terms is not consistent. How can she ignore all the empirical testimony that there is a true essence? How can she say so many people are basically lying? For me she joins this crowd – science-based medicine; PAI – the paradigm of academic ignorance.

I am not saying Anne should follow me in the class struggle, but I am asking her to consider where she stands in bell hooks’ analysis – I am absolutely certain she knows the name and that she knows revolutionary feminism. I have looked a little at bell hooks here.

At the same time as I was listening to Anne Phillips, this appeared from Films for Action. Throughout this blogpost, and my blog in general, I use 1%-system, I could use bell’s terminology “imperialist white-supremacist capitalist patriarchy”.

Love is the most important thing, as a human being I have the right to argue in favour of love even if it has gender implications. Love is more important than money, it is more important than social status, the lack of priority for love in a capitalist society, in which economics is the direction, the accumulation by the 1% the priority, and the enslavement of all others to these objectives the methodology, needs to be changed. Liberalism demands a fairer share of the cake for all without asking for a bigger cake; this has inherent conflict and complies with capitalist ethos. Sadly Marxism is an economic analysis, it is an academic analysis that prioritises class but does not discuss love. Love is a priority over class yet at the same time there ought to be no conflict because love and class working together just means compassion.

Love is lacking in our relationships because the social direction is profit. In terms of relationships love is seen by the economics of society more as the consumer unit that follows from love becoming institutionalised as the “family”. But love needs to be the first priority. This becomes important when we consider children and career. Love and home is not prioritised in capitalism. When listening to Anne Phillips this priority became a concern when it came to discussions of family and career. She was concerned with career inequalities – totally valid, but appeared to tailor-make the family to facilitate this career. Love at home needs to be the priority for society, men and women, rather than an examination of the burden of child-rearing and division of labour. Historically the division of labour is important because women have been exploited; if women did work, historically they were expected to be mothers and run the home as well. But to view the running of the home as a potential obstacle to career is a different exploitation, it is exploitation by the 1%-system (capitalism). Change the emphasis in society. Work is there for the benefit of the species as exemplified by prioritising the home for love within the family, the love between the woman and man, and between children and parents.

I make a specific point concerning the maternal bond, a bond that many women speak of but not something I can understand more than by observation. Sadly in discussing this I am making similar arguments to the right wing, and whilst where they take it is not where I go it concerns me that I am saying similar. Anne describes a specific woman-time, pregnancy, childbirth and breast-feeding. But following this there seemed to be a cut-off point in which parenting became child-rearing and therefore equal division of labour. It seems to me that the maternal love that is built up during pregnancy, child-birth and breast-feeding needs to be considered for the sake of the children. That love will not go away if the mother starts work but somehow that love is a priority for the children.

53% of white women voted for Trump, a sexist exploiter of women. Why? Is it because they are sheep who follow their men? NO. Is it because they want their pussies tickled by famous exploiting men? NO.

Is it because they see their homes threatened with the changing of society? Is it that they see the traditional role of women as mothers as the home-creator threatened by reformist liberals who demand intellectual ideals before what these traditional women see as human compassion? More so, I think, but of course I don’t know. I am prejudiced against people who put ideals first, they are a human disaster, but that makes me a radical compassionate socialist and not a chauvinist. The intellect is a major threat to compassion, and love must be first; sadly at the moment it is a distant second.

As a human being I have a right to call for love and compassion to be first before profits and 1%-accumulation. If such a priority were accepted by society, I would have no right in discussing how women deal with the priority as it affects them. Unfortunately because of the 1%-system there is a limbo in which I am asking society including women to prioritise love and compassion. For me that is putting class first. I have not read where bell puts love and compassion, but her revolutionary feminism removes the 1%-system that perpetuates 1%-accumulation. With patriarchy there cannot be love.

Russell has clearly stated that he was caught out-of-his-depth on occasions in discussions in the past, and that he went back to academia so that he would not get caught out. In academia you get the opportunity to read quality writers and you can read academics, I draw a distinction in principle but not who in practice. The quality writers, often referred to because they are originators, educate because their creativity has connected with consciousness, presence, the muse or whatever. But in academic circles there are well-read people who throw references at you to obfuscate intentionally – it is a tactic of arrogance; throwing references is academic method. Ignore this tactic, ask them to explain in lay language; if they can’t it shows the flaw in their position – they don’t understand. If they can, maybe the reference is worthwhile, but don’t be defeated by academic BULLSHIT. I started this binge with people who were beyond academia – even though Rupert Sheldrake is in academia; maybe Russell had moved on by then.

He fawns at the word professor, I just hear system-player – although I am sure not in all cases. And to be fair everyone has to earn.

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Way forward

Posted: 06/02/2018 by mandtao in Democracy, Struggle, War
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In listening to Russell’s attempts (Under the Skin) to find a way forward, I have been critical – mainly because they are academics. But if I am being critical then I should have an answer. I clung to an old position of class analysis, blamed the 1%, but was never fully clear. I should be.

Systemically there is no way forward. If we look at history there has always been the 1% as monarchy etc and the 99% in servitude. In truth servitude has improved with the advances in civilisation, as in technological advances, but the basic system and oppression is still the same. The 1% are not people who know where to go so they just accumulate, the rest of us in general don’t know where to go and continue in our servitude doing what we can.

Ultimately this comes down to the 4 Noble Truths, that the world is suffering and around us there is conditioning. We are conditioned or we are not. And for 100% there is conditioning and conditioned. Except that it is not for all 100%, for some there are paths. These are people who nature has given the ability not to be conditioned – I can only be as vague as that. They use words like awakened and being conscious, and somehow with this awakening they are able to step outside the world of conditioning – systemic or otherwise – and with this level of consciousness they have peace in a life of suffering and exploitation. But these people do not have a system, there is no awakened party; these are simply individuals who have been fortunate.

For those less fortunate there is only servitude, the “awakened” are subject to similar aspects of servitude – they still require money but for them this awakening has taken the sting out of servitude because of the lack of conditioning. Now in truth most “awakened” discover a niche in which the servitude is much more tolerable, but outwardly this niche appears the same as for the usual servitude. An awakened doctor still has to perform the same daily routines as any doctor, but with a different mindset that servitude is dominated more by compassion than by the system of conditionality.

It is only for these “awakened” that there is not servitude, whatever the outward forms.

But the way forward as considered by Russell is not concerned with these “awakened” necessarily, in the case of most (politically) he is looking at a revolution for ordinary people – the 99% against the 1%. And if we look at history this is not going to happen, however much we would like it to. The apparent freedoms that we now have compared to serfs is only that – an illusion. There is greater productivity if the delusion of freedom is maintained, however the 1%-class are still motivated only by accumulation and the power and influence that comes with that. It suits that class that there appears to be civilisation, there appears to be human development, but such civilisation and development only exists within the class structure – whatever form that class has taken.

The interrelationship and interdependence of the two classes is such that their interests are mutual, but understand this – the 99%-class have no control. Can they ever have control? This is really the question that Russell is asking.

Ever, I cannot answer. For the immediate future one can analyse. This is what the academics are doing within the system, within a system that says that formally their analysis must be limited because they cannot target the 1%. There is no change whilst there is a 1%, no matter what analysis these people put their intellects through – new ways of looking etc.

And at the same time there will be no immediate change because there is no conceivable way in the immediate future that the 99% can be united against the 1%. This is the reality of the class struggle within our society at present, there is no possible unity.

The key to this is understanding the control through military and policing. Whilst these are usually understood in terms of the nation-state, governments are controlled by the 1%, they control the military, and the military fight the wars-for-profits that maintain the 1%. With those profits we are maintained as wage-slaves, and the suffering continues.

Crimes against profits and the class-that-profits are treated with more severity than crimes against people. Occupy is a clear example of this, in western countries Occupy was defeated by governments and policing. Yet Occupy had popular support. Where are the Occupiers now? Continuing the struggle within local communities.

Private security is now on the increase for two reasons. Firstly the profits are more easily accumulated if that security is directly controlled by the 1%. Not being military I don’t understand this, but it appears the boundaries between private security and government security are blurred, and the gun-ho nationalistic military can still delude themselves that they are “patriots” whilst working for BigWar. In my day BigWar was looked down on and called mercenaries.

At the same time the development of such private security closely linked to existing corporations means that the 1% have control of a new military to ensure their continued exploitation.

And with increased technology there needs to be fewer and fewer military. The 1% buy the technology, have to indoctrinate fewer people to man that technology, and they are protected.

The near future holds little hope. The interdependent relationship has helped the 99% develop. Without our labour there are no profits, without us the 1% cannot accumulate. That is true for now. But with increased roboticisation production can become independent of humans. But then the conclusion would be that there would be no wage-slaves and no consumerism, and that means no profits. Part of the 1% wants the technology that improves the means of production, yet at the same time with that technology there are fewer consumers and that affects their profits.

This is a dilemma I have no answer to. The 1% know they need wage-slaves to consume but they still push forward with roboticisation. They are winging it – as they always do. When I talk of the 1% I am not talking of a coordinated team of people working for their own interests. There is mutual interest and they are careful of that. But there is no strategy team. They have power and influence, and assume these are sufficient to maintain control. This is the case so far, but there is no plan, no strategy, simply accumulation. Reduce the accumulation, then they do something and the accumulation comes back. That is all. Humanity, human development, is at the mercy of accumulation winging it.

Yet somehow we do develop.

With the increased entrenched power of the 1%-class where does that leave the 99%-class? Where does it leave class struggle?

Nowhere.

People get together and win skirmishes but these victories are token and the war continues to be lost. If more people get together and start to win more skirmishes then the 1% control government, military and media to keep us down. Occupy was such a situation when the 1% were threatened. Occupy was crushed through media and policing, and because they were threatened there has been a right-wing backlash. Look at our unity now. We are more like 99 powerless 1% than a force to be reckoned with.

Ultimately the 99% is feared, only as a collective working together for each other can the 99% end the accumulation. But there are no signs this will happen, people are working together against their class interest now more than ever.

Does the 99% stop organising? Organising is community, it is people working together, it is the right thing to do. Don’t focus on the result because the result is beyond our control because of the power and influence of the 1% through government and media. By organising we help each other through the suffering, and we give purpose – participating in the community.

In the end however there cannot at the moment be revolution, changing the ruling-class, because the power and influence of the 1% is all pervasive. But mobilising around the issue of class awareness, around the issue that it is the 1% whose power and influence causes the problem is a sufficient process at the moment. Why are people out of work? Because the money that could be in circulation creating jobs is in the bank accounts of the 1%. That puts an end to the racist arguments about jobs, demand more jobs from those who have the power to give jobs. The argument has been put clearly for the wrong reasons in the class-oriented tax cuts in the US – trickle-down. Jobs are trickle-down but you don’t need tax cuts for jobs to trickle down, there just has to be the willingness of the 1% to provide the jobs that are necessary in society. Cutting back on jobs that are not there for direct profit is not the answer. What about the jobs for people, jobs that make society a better place to live, caring jobs. How many ordinary people begrudge those jobs – taking our taxes etc, when huge amounts of money are spent on defence procurement because they provide profits for the 1%. Demand jobs for the community, jobs for the environment, jobs for society; NOT jobs for the profits of the 1%. If these jobs were done there would not be demand for jobs, there would not be the tensions around “taking our jobs”. Provide jobs, end racism. Equally if there were not incentives to oppress women in the workplace it would not happen. Control the economy for the people not the 1%. This is awareness that would help society even though it would take much more than this to wrest control from the 1%.

Ultimately class struggle as a community activity is based in compassion, but unfortunately that compassion is often sidelined. For most within the mass movement there is a feeling of belonging and a sense of hope that they might gain something from being involved. But such people are not mass movement leaders. Few of these leaders benefit the movement. Firstly there are the opportunists whose rhetoric reflects the demands of the movement, but the interests of these opportunists are purely personal: Blair is perhaps the most extreme example of this. Within the movement there are leaders guided by ideals, usually but not always Marxist. Because they follow ideals they are divisive in the movement, they are not leaders of the movement but led by ideals. Yet out of this struggle come genuine leaders who lead by example and are led by mass movement consensus. These people have compassion. Unfortunately by the nature of the movement such compassionates move towards political parties and alliances. Once in such it is legitimate for such people to follow discipline, so again their compassion is frustrated. However in the end such leaders become awakened by their compassion – often without recognising it.

So in the end the struggle comes back to the individual. Struggling, organising is the right thing to do; it enables those around you. But it only works if it is part of your developing awareness, with your detachment from conditioning. As you release the suffering that comes from your own conditioning, so through community struggle you help others release their suffering. This release is not as a successful objective, a campaign that has been won, but simply the release of suffering that comes from community participation – compassion.

In addition I remember at the time of political activity, the rationale that I kept coming back to (not publicly) was the struggle to give people the time to be spiritual. But I now see that as a long-term objective, you need time to be freed up for spirituality; it seems to me that we are now more trapped in our work than previously when it was just our labour they used.

In the end I feel the struggle focusses on changing the individual but there are many ways this can happen; a compassionate individual has the class interest at heart whether they verbalise it or not.

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Brad Evans

Posted: 04/02/2018 by zandtao in Democracy, Finance, ONE planet, Struggle, War
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Love (respecting dignity), academy for questioning, and answers through history; what more can you want to understand 1%, politics and the way of the world. Find this in Russell Brand and Brad Evans – Under the Skin. Understanding the violence leads to an understanding of the nature of repression – obvious really but never thought of it.

No provisos, no fundamental flaws – just listen to the talk.

I missed at the end discussion of conspiracy theories. Brad’s answer was consider the empirical, examine what is, don’t deal with theories you have no idea about it. Excellent. What does this mean for my continual analysis of class and the 1%? 1% have power and influence, this is observable even though many will not go as far as I do. Is it a conspiracy to blame the 1%? No. Because they control, they control government, they control the number of jobs, they control all the political aspects of our lives. When we see problems concerning racism, feminism etc., these problems are fundamentally created because the 1% have accumulated much of the world’s resources for personal greed. This is observable fact even though we do not have the actual figures. If we call the 1% conspiracy, then we are avoiding the empirical – the observable. If the 1% become obfuscated with all the conspiracy theories so that we do not see their power and influence then we area voiding the truth.

Is the power and influence of the 1% what Brad describes as “visible traces”? I hope so. Use theory as a tool but based on facts. That is fine as well but there is a doubt raised in me as to how far he takes the power and influence of the 1%. That doubt is not based on anything I know he has said, but is based on the fact that he has a job in a academia, and fundamentally academics are restricted by their establishment to tell the truth. But we all have to work, leave that as a question given how much sense there was in the talk.

It is good to see the flag flying in academia, it explains to some extent why Russell is seeking answers there.

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I listened to this Russell Brand talk (Under the Skin) with Paul Gilroy, and came away dissatisfied. The man is a professional intellectual (professor) so it is not likely we would agree.

The talk made me ask this question “Am I an arcane Marxist monster who puts everything down to the 1%?” Immediately I ask that question I know that they want me to have doubt, but at the same time it is right to question.

There was only one thing I disagreed with, and this is the best point to start. He said nationalists start racism, and I completely disagree with this. Racism is part of the class struggle, and is created by the 1%. To use Paul’s term, the manufactured ignorance of the nationalists, especially the ignorance that goes against class interest, is used by the 1% to create populist racism.

As with Adam Curtis, similar intellectual approaches, he offered observations about racism. These observations were interesting but they did not offer a solution – I offer the impossible target of the 1%. In words it is simple, get rid of the 1%-economy, the conditions that produce racism cease to exist, and then over time people will forget the cultural racism – the manufactured ignorance – they grew up with. It is logical. Our differences are cultural (inc. religion). The 1%-economy favours one culture over another – white privilege, so when there is a different economy that does not seek such favouritism then cultures become economically the same, and then over time cultures see their difference as irrelevant. There are plenty of examples of cultures living in harmony together with mutual ribbing but not rivalry eg English/Welsh, North/South most of the time. Most of the time? Second homes in Wales led to conflict, an economic issue that put people out of their homes. The North/South divide is taken more of a joke because the economic differences are not different in the same workplace – most of the time. It is the economic favouritism that empowers difference in race to become racism. Natural national boundaries don’t necessarily produce conflict except for invasion and appropriation or African countries created as commodity boundaries(the old names Gold Coast, Ivory Coast etc.) I have sufficient faith in human nature to say that over time cultural racism will fade away, but I know many who disagree. The power and influence of the 1% whilst they are controlling the world cannot be fought, after a lifetime of personal struggle I see little achievement for myself but importantly for the movement, and I see a situation that is far worse than when I started working – 1973.

Russell’s point on spiritual development is a good one, genuine religious people are not racists. In the current materialist climate spirituality is not an answer. But maybe in future?

But the question “who are the slaves now?” was not answered. There was a reference to all being the working-class – the 99%, and a joke that all behind the glass, being paid to make the programme, would resent being called working-class. Whilst there is no union of wage-slaves against the 1%, there can be no unity and change.

Unity against the 1% as the source of racism was not really addressed, and it was an omission. I have read Russell’s book “Revolution”, and liked it. But he doesn’t seem to be bringing revolution to the table, neither with Paul nor Adam. Surprised!

Given the lack of class analysis it is still a talk worth listening to. BUT I am not an arcane monster, class is still the issue. How we see class needs to be carefully considered – not just cloth caps.

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