Archive for the ‘War’ Category

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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A view of narratives

Posted: 20/03/2018 by zandtao in BigTech, Finance, Struggle, War
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I hear Russell calling for a new narrative, and such a call might well be what is popular now – I don’t know, Naomi thinks so and that means something. I have in a sense rejected this approach because it could be standard intellectual obfuscation that moves away from a clear class analysis. But perhaps it is a real movement, let me treat it as such.

What is the old narrative, if we want new we have to know what is old and what we want to change?

If we want to understand an old narrative we have to see historical trends. This is so important because if we do not examine trends we can end up with idealisms based on rhetoric imposed on a time-frame. To explain this let’s consider democracy.

In the UK where did democracy come from? There was tribalism, feudalism, monarchy, Cromwell and parliament. There was staggered suffrage. It is worth considering these on a timeline to understand our democracy. Under the monarchy and feudalism people were fundamentally serfs or soldiers with an existence predicated on the landowner. This started to change with money when different people became wealthy and used money to buy power. At this point parliament developed where wealth and land were supposedly two opposing interests. Cromwell was a figurehead in this as he represented wealth as parliamentarians. To develop support parliamentarians encouraged the notion that parliament was for the people, and so began the delusion of democracy. Initially suffrage was very limited but once it was seen that voting confirmed the status quo suffrage was expanded. Democracy as part of the establishment has never been in the interests of the people but has been used as a carrot to delude people into working for the establishment. This is democracy today. Similarly we could examine US history but it is not necessary to reinvent the wheel, look through the eyes of Howard Zinn.

For most people these are not accepted narratives.

Here is a forum for discussions on a new narrative (not necessarily recommended), and here is their presentation of the old narrative:-

“Within this narrative the basic trajectory of life was seen as go to college, get a job, get married, buy a house, have kids, go to church, work every day until you have saved up enough money, then retire.”

[This I will term the normal narrative].

But what can be clearly seen by those with an enquiring mind is that this version of the old narrative could fit into a view of consumer conditioning. Examine the components of this view of narrative. We get educated to get a job. Nature dictates we have kids but the narrative turns that into house, maybe church, kids getting educated. When we get too old for a job we retire, and this is enabled by the narrative through savings and pension schemes.

This “normal” narrative simply accepts the prevailing system that is based around getting money to bring up a family. That narrative simply accepts that people will consume. This narrative also assumes that society’s method for enabling this narrative is acceptable.

Politically this narrative has been supported by the capitalist system, money is accumulated to create means of production and the profits from sales of consumer items go to the owners of those means of production. Various mechanisms such as the stock market are used to create the accumulation. Intrinsic within the old narrative is the notion that this is just business, and whilst there are some minor problems business works, capitalism works.

So tied in with the old narrative is a capitalist system, and this system has been questioned. Initially this system was questioned by Karl Marx pointing out problems, along with Lenin, Trotsky, Castro, Guevara and others proposing communism as an alternative. Whilst communist alternatives have not been successful criticisms of the way capitalism has developed have increased.

These criticisms perhaps reached a crescendo globally with movements such as Horizontalidad, the Arab Spring, Indignados and Podemos in Spain, and then the Occupy movement. Perhaps most significant in these movements became the recognition of the 1%, new terminology describing Marx’s bourgeoisie and proletariat.

During and since these times has been the rise of the right wing as a response to the globalisation by the 1%. These right-wingers seek a return to the perceived wealth that nationalism had supposedly brought. This emerging right-wing is common throughout the white world (Russell Means’ European) where benefits of the capitalist system had been more pronounced. These right-wingers target liberal movements as the source of the problems. Identity politics seeks to promote non-white races, women and LBGQT communities, and for these people on the right this liberalism has become an enemy.

Automation has completely changed the workplace in the last 50 years. It is now more profitable to increase the use of machines in manufacture being both more reliable mechanically and also able to work 24/7. In the capitalist system that is only interested in profit, much work that needs to be done is not profitable such as caring and the environment. Attempts are made to commodify all these non-manufacture items, and make people pay for them through taxation. So there is some profit-making but high taxation is de-motivating. At the same time a large proportion of taxation is required for defence procurement without which many western economies would fail.

With increased roboticisation there will be less and les jobs under the capitalist model, with profit as the driving force robots will be much cheaper. With less jobs there will be less money in circulation, and without that money there can be no consumerism that maintains the capitalist system.

With all of these considerations the “normal” narrative described above is not feasible.

Before considering a new narrative it is important to consider criticisms of the old narrative. With the emphasis on profit as the means of maintaining the capitalist system and therefore the normal narrative, critics point out the consequences of this normality. Increased accumulation has led to all sorts of crimes against humanity, beginning with battles for expansion, then colonisation and neo-colonialism. We have now reached a stage in which wars-for-profits are justified as an unspoken aspect of this narrative, and our education system within its hidden curriculum is required to provide the wage-slaves that keep the capitalist system functioning. At the same time we have to recognise that the system could be considered unsustainable. We are using resources without replacing them. Spending functions only in terms of debt both on an individual and governmental level, economies function as fiat economies without public reference to this invention of money. Within the white countries governments have recently promoted austerity agendas yet whilst doing so gaps between rich and poor have widened. And the taxation system is breaking down because transnationals are dodging taxation leaving money for government services short.

With all of its gross consequences capitalism does provide for some a pleasant lifestyle as described in the normal narrative. There are “natural” components within this normal narrative, and these capitalism provides for. Having children is a human necessity – as with all life. Capitalism does ensure that people work for the community in some ways albeit those ways only exist if there is profit for the accumulators, however it has to be noted that community services do not function efficiently because they lack money and resources. This of course has to be the case because such services are not creating profits.

The emphasis on profit is exclusive. In the normal narrative the church is included yet in western countries church involvement is variable. Other than mentioning the church what might be termed values are not included in this normalcy. But of course humans do have values. In general I think it is objective to say that under this normal narrative human development is not a focus, but there is of course development. However this development is driven by profit, research and development is primarily financed by corporations with the ultimate objective of profit and accumulation.

What is not mentioned above that is part of the normal narrative is the rule of law. As with all these questions books can be written on every issue but fundamentally this law protects the normal narrative of which capitalism is integral. The forces of law, police, courts and military protect the normal narrative and at the same time the capitalist system, and there are many cases in which the individual loses out to the interests of the corporation.

When we examine a new narrative we have to understand that such a narrative will meet powerful opposition if it leads to changes in the situation of those who have the accumulation – 1% or bourgeoisie. The rule of law fundamentally protects these people, and a new narrative has no power to overcome such a rule of law. It is in the interest of the powerful to consider a new narrative as they must realise that the way of life of accumulation is under threat as time marches on. There is an immediate conflict that they need to address, that of increasing automation and roboticisation, and the impact of that on consumerism.

For most normal people this immediate conflict is creating fear and violence. With increasing automation the normal narrative doesn’t function, and whilst white people fight to retain this normalcy their fear turns to violence of racism as well as greater acceptance of war – that then enable profits.

So when we ask about a new narrative we are actually questioning our way of life, and this questioning is becoming increasingly imminent. What is needed is for the narrative to evolve, but has the accumulation gone so far that evolution is not possible? Is there any new narrative in which the 1% can actually fit in?

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Fear Delusion and Responsibility

Posted: 10/03/2018 by zandtao in Insight, Struggle, War
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In this blog I attacked the white middle-classes that I grew up in, and whilst they need a jolt my criticism was not accurate. I accused them of contributing to the war devastation of the 1% because of their greed and delusion. I think the accusation of greed is unfair.

OK the white English middle-classes have more than their fair share when compared to the poor in Bangladesh, this is an unreasonable comparison. And to be honest the money that most middle-class people have accumulated is not the issue. Whilst they might well be greedy and seeking more, the money they have does pale in comparison to the 1%. Just one of the 1% has the wealth of 100000 or maybe a million of the middle classes I am critical of. No matter what the egos of these middle-class might tell them the interests of these people lie with the class that is not 1% – 99% or proletariat.

It is much fairer not to describe these people as being particularly greedy but more that they are afraid of losing their bit. It is this fear that dominates their approach. Their fear of losing their bit formulates their political approach. They accept the devastation the 1%-economy creates globally for their two up-and-down, sanctuary from the poor, sanctuary from starving and sanctuary from racial disharmony. Their racism is institutional or cultural. The system provides them with a set of myths that threaten their homes and way of life, big black guys raping daughters, hordes of Muslims riding camels through their backyards, swirling scimitars and stealing garden gnomes. For most of these people they have not been hurt by the results of racial tension, bullying at school, mugging etc, but the fear for their home translates to fear of blacks – racism etc.

This fear fires acceptance of the delusions that enables the stability of the current system, enables the continued accumulation by the 1%. Their fear connects change with loss of their way of life so whatever change is mooted on whatever moral grounds it is rejected, they accept delusional arguments for stability rather than change.

A major consequence of this fear and delusion is what is done in their name. It is governments of western democracies (NATO) that are spreading war and terror globally. Whilst I consider Blair an evil man – and guilty of war crimes, he only did the same as every other British leader; he got the British people sufficiently in line to support the Americans in the Gulf. The middle-classes didn’t particularly want to support the Americans but they went along with it because it was the system and stability that mattered the most to them. The deaths were not as important. Their fear and delusion allowed them to give responsibility for their actions in a democracy to a government that was not acting for them.

The whole basis of their way of life is tied in with this abdication of responsibility. They would never do such things but the Americans can, soldiers can, mercenaries can. Their fear is disenfranchising, their vote has no component of compassion, their view is limited to keeping their way of life at almost any cost. As a result they hand over their moral integrity, their human responsibility to governments whose actions enable 1%-accumulation primarily through war-for-profits.

Greed is a small factor in sourcing the problem. Whilst many middle-classes would choose greater wealth and would be prepared to work for greater wealth. It is more a question of losing what they have that drives them into accepting the delusions stability offers them. For the promise of stability they give away their moral integrity and human responsibility to leaders who enable 1%-accumulation. Middle-classes are not free from greed but that is not the primary mover like I said here.

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Cycle of Violence

Posted: 19/02/2018 by zandtao in Struggle, War


My heart goes out to all the people who suffer from violence, any form of violence, but especially state violence. How can any rational society sanction violence except as a last resort? Then when we examine the root causes of so much state intervention and see that it is for 1%-profits, we have to scream. And when your family is killed by state intervention violence, who do you hit back? There is no-one to hit back, and terrorism is born. Then when those same state interventionists declare a war on terror ie indiscriminate war, how do people hit back?

So much was heard about the Manchester Arena, but what about MOAB – after this podcast on the Manchester Arena? The mother of all bombs was dropped on Afghanistan last year, how many people died because of MOAB? Do we know? Where was the media outcries? Did Under the Skin have a podcast?

When acts of violence happen “randomly” we blame craziness.

Mass school shootings happen regularly in the US, everyone except the US knows that it is to do with the availability of weapons.

The UK government accepts that a high proportion of British revenue comes from the sale of guns. When I grew up people selling guns in war-torn areas were seen as the lowest of the low, now governments sell. And weapons end up in circulation.

Countries that create wars for profits such as NATO are now claiming that the people who commit these “random” acts are crazy. A state can sell arms and create war – this is legitimate and sane, but individuals are crazy.

Same old, same old, Russell. Forget your Essex roots, and promote non-violence.

You ask what can be done? The number of acts of Muslim terror are proportional to the amount of state interference violence, the number of troops and the number of drone attacks. There is an intuitive statistical correlation – real stats somewhere? Think about the numbers. Reduce the state violence and you will reduce the terror attacks. Mathematical logic. It is correlation just not linear.

If someone is grieving and they hit out at a family member we turn the other cheek. But when it is state violence we turn a blind eye to the state action, and blame the grievers for hitting out.

And there is a logic to the correlation if not the individual act. Every government who is committing this state interference is a democracy, vote for a government of peace and there will be less acts of terror – mathematical correlation.

Stop with the same old, same old, Russell. And why didn’t you have a Muslim person of peace on you podcast? Brad was a regular, Jonathan supposedly advocates peace but apparently has no connection to the incident, a Muslim person of peace would have had a relevant perspective.

I would not have written this blog 3 days after the Manchester Arena when Russell’s podcast happened. Two reasons:- first insensitive to families, second fear of British backlash – fear a bit, I live far away. But there’s plenty of the conditioned right living in Thailand.

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Confusion

Posted: 11/02/2018 by zandtao in BigTech, Struggle, War
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It is sick the way they are creating confusion.

There is Yuval. He is wise enough to understand the world is fabricated by stories, he uses vipassana to see through the stories, but because of his lack of right view he makes a catastrophic error. His failure to see that there is beyond the intellect – beyond the arrogance of home deus – he concludes there is nothing. He concludes organisms are algorithms.

This is all that AI wants – BigTech, an academic to latch onto for their robotic incursion. Call it humanism, say that God is outmoded as this bearded being above the clouds, but dismiss the pure essence that is humanity, creativity, insight, the muse. Who is searching for this essence? Who is looking for love?

I grew up with stories, these were stories built on fear in middle-class suburbia where all were frightened of war. These stories wanted stability because people were frightened. Now there is no fear of war in the West. Whilst the West is permanently at war that war is exported, there are only a few who are soldiers because war is fought with technology. War does not hurt the West, so the West feels no pain and is not afraid.

But deep down everyone is afraid of blowback. No matter how many intellectual constructs are put forward, deep down the West knows it is guilty of waging war with impunity. Until …. Refugees. For maybe a decade war was fought with impunity, now the implications are returning to source. And more stories are constructed. There is a return of great nations, MAGA, Brexit, ….

But all around is confusion. Stories conflict. Truth does not matter, so long as the story we are comfortable works. Liberal stories are reinforced by mainstream “reasonableness”, the mainstream mocks the ignorance of the right, and Liberals feel validated. Of course these Liberals do not condemn war because their societies are based on war.

At the same time populism drives people to their own media where they are also validated. In this case the populist ego talks of pride, chauvinism, heroism and superiority. It talks of stories of ways of life, of bygone eras, of fictions, of myths, ….

These confronting factions are starting to create a living hell of confusion. Voices in the wilderness cry for unity whatever, but for most it is unity behind their flag whether it is Liberalism or Populism.

And this confusion is a forewarning of dystopia, Trumpocalypse. More and more stories are fantasies of apocalypse, it is as if we are being prepared for it – in the same way as I grew up expecting a Cold War. Did I want the Cold War to happen? NO. Was I prepared for it to happen? YES, in some way. Ian Fleming had prepared me.

Where is the story of compassion? Where is the story that in essence people are compassionate? In havens. In places where people are forced to hide so that they can be compassionate. More and more this is apocalypse, people hiding away whilst the dominant stories drive us to apocalypse.

Why don’t we make our stories positive? Why aren’t our main stories about finding compassion? Because there are no profits for the 1% in compassion. It is so simple to see through these stories if we choose, the message is hardly hidden.

If there is a 1%-apocalypse history will only say “why were we so stupid to accept these stories?”

But remember none of these stories matter deep down to you if you choose. If you participate in the stories you become attached, and they hurt. What if you don’t participate? What if you look at the stories and say, they mean nothing. Go beyond the stories and find happiness. The stories bring sadness, participating in the stories entraps you, move away – move beyond, there is still peace. Essence is beyond stories, essence is the home of peace. Find that home.

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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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Academy, 1% and Trump

Posted: 04/02/2018 by zandtao in War
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I have no idea whether Trump supporters still believe that he is fighting the 1%, but BAR has written an article recognising academic verification that Trump swung into office not on a charger of his own money but of the usual suspects – finance and hedge funds [1%]. Although Robert Mercer wasn’t specifically mentioned in the BAR article, this confirms academically what Real News Network had been saying about Trump finances. Trump is rich, backed by 1%, and has done 1% bidding as described in this BAR article.

I don’t like Hillary but have never seen her as any more than a typical power-hungry corrupt politician – Trump is far worse, but Glen Ford is far more condemning; however Hillary’s cackling over the death of Gaddafi is chilling.

Adam Curtis blog with Russell Brand “Under the Skin” spoke of finance wanting stability, but under Trump that has clearly changed. It is interesting to note that the 1% are not uniform (one identity). Robert Mercer and the hedge-fund backers brought Trump in yet initially the 1% were cagey; now he has proved his worth to them. “Or, some would argue that he has been bludgeoned into that posture. Certainly, the bulk of the ruling class and their attendants, interpreters and enforcers were horrified that the Orange Menace might destabilize the two-capitalist-party system, undermine the free global flow of capital and jobs, and allow the momentum of the military offensive begun by Barack Obama in 2011 to falter. That threat to the imperial order has passed. Trump’s savage assault on the very concept of regulation; his willingness to renegotiate NAFTA and the Trans Pacific Partnership; and the rise of the generals as both day-to-day and overall policy managers in his White House, are “normalizing” Trump. The Republican tax cut — a looting spree – although not engineered by Trump, redounds to his benefit in 1% circles. As their unearned gains accrue, the Lords of Capital appreciate the uses of The Donald. Orange is the new normal – a measure of how insane late stage capitalism has become.” It was actually a fall-back of mine (along with brinkmanship) that finance required stability. It is very worrying that they can embrace such overt war-mongering as Trump and profit from him, it was almost a “comfort” that the wars were secretive – almost covert, and that maybe they were ashamed to profit from them. But to embrace Trump is frightening. I hope they come to their senses.

The article finishes with “The main objective is to make endless war palatable, as imperialism attempts to bomb, blockade, occupy and bluster its way out of a cascade of crises. Unable to compete with the Chinese command economy, its “soft” power exhausted, the U.S. empire plays the only strong card it has left: its massive military, now centered on a special operations force roughly as large as the entire French Army. War becomes both the means of imperial survival and justification for its continued existence: the how and the why of empire.

Liberals read this “That’s why there is no such thing as a “resistance” that is not loudly and consistently anti-war.

Ndeh Ntumazah and Omwony-Ojwok taught me my world view (taken from my YJ days), this is why I seek the clarity that sound black people have. Thank you BAR.

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US hegemony and Neoliberalism

Posted: 27/01/2018 by zandtao in ONE planet, Struggle, War
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It is always worth listening/reading Black Agenda Report for the clarity. Here, Margaret Kimberley, is talking about the African branch of the US hegemony, AFRICOM:-

I have nothing to add to what she is saying. As a black person she is critical of the Democratic black caucus throughout; that is for her to say. I have no wish to single out the black caucus, I am concerned as to how little we hear of US/NATO expansionism in the west as a whole. That is a characteristic of neoliberalism, ignore the real issues of war and wage-slavery, and whine away about this or that at the cheese-and-wine soiree. In the UK we have to know that our NHS is n decline whilst military spending is increasing – under US hegemonic instruction.

Just a quick mention – BAR clarity again.

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Truth?

Posted: 06/01/2018 by zandtao in Insight, ONE planet, Science, Struggle, War

Since my early retirement I have enjoyed learning from the internet. I got sucked into conspiracies and subscribed to what I assumed were left-wing newsletters that kept me informed. It is only with examining the rise of Trump that I have determined that many of these are right-wing intellectuals. This is understandable as I see their funding as being a knock-on effect of the 1%-manipulations.

However whilst I describe this right-wing intellectualism, it does not mean that this information is untrue – far from it. I consider these intellectuals the right-wing periphery, and have no wish to dissociate from them. Of course that does not mean I have any right-leanings.

For me the issue lies with the answer to this question, how do we overcome the 1%? And the answer for me is very clearly Collective Unity, and struggling as the United 99% against the 1%. It is never clear to me how the individualism of these good right-wing intellectuals will overcome something as powerful as the 1%. In my view they need to overcome their abhorrence of the liberals, an abhorrence I also feel, and somehow find a way of working in Unity against the 1%.

Government and taxation is of course very divisive. When I look at the neoliberal governments of Blair and Obama I understand why these intellectuals are against taxation and government. As a teacher I incline to defend the educational aspect of governance, but I know that the caring aspects are only a subterfuge for the main current purpose of taxation – accumulation of wealth to the 1% through taxation for defence spending on the wars-for-profit.

There needs to be some form of commitment to Unity, and I don’t see these right-wing intellectuals wanting that; I must just accept the bonus of knowledge that the right-wing periphery funding provides. The egos that comes with individualism anywhere on the political spectrum has also to be recognised and defeated, ego is a major divisive factor.

I am old enough for truth to be easy, proletarian struggle. Occupy reinforced that with its simple 1% clarity. But these understandings are interspersed throughout a steady campaign of confusion. Politically for me this has shown itself clearly recently with the identification of the left with liberalism, when I think that people might identify my position with neoliberalism, its wars-for-profits and wage-slavery I shudder. But the clarity of my truth has to be tempered by the obvious failure of the genuine left to unite and be meaningful, hence the ease with which we have been labelled with the liberals.

This blog on truth was sparked by watching this video called “The Republic of Science” from Judith Curry, I absolutely do not recommend this video. In Mandtao I examine science – I am posting this in my main blog Zandtao as well. As a Buddhist I am firmly committed to 100% enquiry (4 Agreements as well). Science needs questioning because science is establishment. Now saying science is establishment for me means that science is controlled by the 1%, and when you listen to Judith she talks of the way science is controlled. She makes a very convincing case, that creative scientists (who she calls mavericks) are restricted by the science establishment and government direction. This is excellent, Mandtao would appear to say the same thing but the reality is the exact opposite.

Judith Curry is on the periphery of the Koch brothers campaign for climate denial. I suspect, although I don’t know, that whatever funding she gets stems from the vast amounts the Koch brothers have used to dominate the internet. So-called independent media. I have no interest in her climate denial evaluation – she might have a genuine position; she does not appear to be a direct definitive climate denier. What concerns me is that her analysis of science is so close to the truth that it is so easy to fall for her line.

The problem is she does not see the source of the problem as the 1%. She talks mostly of the science establishment stifling mavericks, who can argue with that? Her position is then that the establishment is stifling the maverick who talks of climate denial. This is so plausible but oh so dangerous. The question is “when is science stifling maverick creativity?” as opposed to “when is scientific knowledge refuting politically and financially-inspired bogus claims of climate denial?” these are significantly different positions yet so subtle. On the level of daily science, the source of funding that creates such destructive scepticism cannot be traced to the 1%, and leaves blogposts such as this in the realms of lunatic conspiracy. This is the purpose of confusion. And with the current level of collective confusion there can be no Unity to fight.

How can I ask for all to see through such subtle manipulation?

I have a completely misguided acquaintance who can put “likes” on my 1%-posts, and yet can support Trump. How confused is he? He does not have a mass movement base to his understanding. An individualist will examine Judith Curry’s individualist examination of science – the individualism that celebrates mavericks, and can see the partial truth of what she says as truth. The mass movement says “where is the hand of the 1%?”, and immediately looks at finance. Once you apply that paradigm you see the Koch Brothers and climate denial – whether Judith believes what she says or not.

I can support her analysis of the scientific establishment, and I thank the funding that has powered that. I can thank the right wing for the Corbett Report that brings this and other useful information to light. But if I am unsure I ask the mass movement question “where is the hand of the 1%?” …. and there is clarity.

As Mandtao the maths/stats man I am a supporter of scientific knowledge and scientific method. I attack the science establishment for similar reasons to Judith Curry’s video “the Republic of Science”, but in the end she is supporting the 1%, the Corbett Report is supporting the 1% by promoting her. All the scepticism around climate change can only be seen in terms of 1%-industries, the Koch Brothers campaign, and how any doubts that arise enable this industrial establishment to continue with the environmental damage and pollution – whatever “scientific point” Judith or others raise.

It is sad in this world that the 1% are so sick, so detached from the species they are a part of, that they want to destroy the very Unity of who we are – the ONE planet. And they will finance and manipulate at any level to enact their sickness. It is so hard to understand how these people became so sick, I understand why Icke wants to separate them and call them lizards, but they are just sick humans. We have to face the understanding that humanity can become as sick as these people.

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