I'd started a piece that was going to be called "I read the news today, oh boy" which was just going to be a survey of what was in the news recently, but time constraints and the enormity of it all, the sheer weight of things, overwhelmed me.
I still want to mention them, so here they are in no particular order, with no particular explanations:
- Riots in Haiti following fraudulent election (where largest party and most popular candidate banned by order of USA) during cholera epidemic
- Rob Ford imagines that he can cancel an already started $8 billion project with one phone call
- Militarist moron Don Cherry uses Ford's swearing-in ceremony as a chance to insult large portion of Ford's bosses, the left-wing pinkos/left-wing kooks of Toronto (the constituency with the smallest amount of shit in their brains FWIW)
- Ontario ombudsman releases report on criminal, unconstitutional implementation of Public Works Act by McGuinty government. Chris Bentley, McGuinty's attorney general, doesn't even make a public comment so far as I know
- In response to clear police criminal behaviour at the G20, Toronto Police Association president Mike McCormack says people don't know the whole story. Won't/can't articulate what "whole story" is. (I'm tempted to try the "McCormack Defence" just to see how well it works. I'll beat up a really old person, or someone in a wheelchair, or a small child, with a baseball bat, in front of some surveillance video camera, and when I'm in court defending myself, I'll simple drone on that people don't know the whole story, and leave it at that.)
- Toronto police chief Bill Blair lied about a citizen, lied about the SIU investigation, lied about the five-metre law, and says he's not going to resign. Ford (who I suspect shares the same penchant for cavity searches from the police as Paul Godfrey) stands by his man. Chris Bentley is silent as far as I know.
- Two more cases of police brutality are before the courts in Ottawa, on top of the Stacy Bonds, Terry Delay stories. Acting police chief says "We have a problem." (No shit sherlock. Oh, wait, is the problem all the publicity, or that your whole force is a bunch of goons and cowards from top-to-bottom?)
- Class war in Europe. London youth riot over tripling of tuition as a result of austerity package meant to pay off bankers' debts. Austerity in Ireland. Austerity in Greece. Austerity is coming to Portugal and Spain. Pure class war.
-Obama sells out to Republicans demanding extension of idiotic tax cuts for super-rich. Part of capitulation (described by the bullshit artist as "stimulus" for the economy to create jobs, blah, blah, blah) is a payroll tax cut that's really only about destroying Social Security (long a target of Repugs and DLC-types like Obama).
- Arrest of Julian Assange on very dubious (on the face of it) sexual assault charges in Sweden. Assange is head of Wikileaks which, so far, has released evidence of US war crimes in Iraq and Afghanistan, evidence of US knowledge of corruption in Afghanistan, and most recently, US diplomatic cables which detail clearly criminal US behaviour, including orders to spy and steal personal information on United Nations leadership. ... Majority of population believes Wikileaks' exposure of US criminal behaviour which has killed hundreds of thousands and ruined the lives of millions more, is a bad thing and support the vendetta against Assange and Wikileaks. (EVEN AFTER WE'VE LONG KNOWN THE ATTACK ON IRAQ ITSELF WAS BASED ON LIES!!!!)
- In retaliation, computer hackers begin a counter-attack on private financial institutions that have dumped Wikileaks' ability to receive donations. US and other government counter-counter-attacks. I personally expect both sides to become more sophisticated and more expansive and more brutal. I believe the advantage of talent and numbers will be on the hackers' side. Look for possible semi-permanent shut-downs of financial institutions and government agencies over next year.
- bush II admits in his stupid memoirs that he ordered the torture of prisoners. Media and public yawns.
- harpercons fess-up after leak to media about their secret negotiations with USA on a common "security perimeter" for Canada and USA to eviscerate our human rights on both sides of the border.
- Algerian refugee Mohamed Harkat, unable (supposedly) to keep his story straight in the face of surprise accusations based on secret evidence, is judged to be a security threat to Canada and faces the possibility of deportation to torture in Algeria.
So, there you have it. There's probably more. Oh yeah! Little things like the Climate Change Conference in Cancun where Canuck Closet-Case [alliteration!] John Baird is doing his bit to dither while the eco-system collapses. The mass-extinctions in the ocean. The on-going financial sector rot that will eventually distract and render us incapable of responding to these very real crises ... and on and on.
The thing is, this nonsense will keep coming at us from all directions and we'll continue to be overwhelmed as to which vile/stupid/ridiculous/dangerous/idiotic/inhuman/hypocritical outrage we can respond to, because as long as the same vile/stupid/ridiculous/dangerous/idiotic/inhuman/hypocritical system, which advances the same vile/stupid/ridiculous/dangerous/idiotic/inhuman/hypocritical individuals persists, they'll keep doing what they do best.
We need to EXPAND democracy. EXPAND democracy into all aspects of human life. How do we achieve this? First, by stopping its contraction in the face of an increasingly rapacious and desperate ruling class. How do we do that? By more support for judges who rule correctly (and no, in the cases I'm talking about, this is not just a difference of opinion). Write to them. Write to newspapers. Support them on discussion boards. I believe that strengthening the climate in favour of the rule-of-law and human rights will strengthen the resolve of principled judges to rule in favour against the hegemony of our insane governments and out-of-control suppression agencies.
In such a context, we should collectively look for all legal avenues to punish government law-breaking and corporate criminality. EVERY SINGLE TIME they do something illegal, we should be organized enough (the hundreds of thousands of us in Canada and the millions in the USA) to launch a legal action against them.
More tactically-minded protests. There has to be a half-way point between meaningless, counter-productive vandalism and offering ourselves like sheep to the slaughter.
Organized political involvement. The "tea party" in the USA are pretty marginal, stupid people on the whole. But one thing they've done that isn't even based on their billionaire supporters/puppet-masters, is that they've taken over some local parties and put their own candidates forward (a source of the whole right-wing counterattack since the 1970s), whereas we imagine that assembling in groups of a dozen, a hundred, a thousand, ten thousand, and occasionally, a hundred thousand, and yelling for a few hours under the watchful eyes of the police, is going to change things.
Greed-crazed murderous psychopaths aren't going to listen to appeals to reason. At the moment, the people who give a shit are vastly outnumbered by the evil people, the deluded enablers of the evil people, and the don't-really-give-a-shit people.
A modification of that last paragraph if I may: I think more people would give a shit if we came up with some sort of coherent plan that would make their working with us achieve something beside a few seconds of condescending coverage in the corporate media.
That's my post for today at least.